Nirbhaya Fund: HC adjourns plea to March 3

Madras High Court. (DH Photo)

The Madras High Court on Wednesday adjourned to March 3 a plea for a direction to the state government to immediately set up a high level empowered committee on women safety to obtain necessary funds from the Women and Child Welfare ministry under the Nirbhaya fund and ensure its 100 per cent utilization.

The matter came up before a division bench of Justices M Sathyanarayanan and R Hemalatha. Additional government pleader E Manoharan gave an undertaking he will file a report on the utilization of Nirbhaya funds. Appearing for the Union government, Assistant Solicitor General G Karthikeyan submitted that a status report would be filed on the overall mechanism with regard to the utilization of the Nirbhaya Fund.

Advocate Suryaprakasam, who filed the PIL, has also sought a direction for submission of a current report on utilization of funds to the court to ensure speedy justice for women and their safety.

According to the petitioner, in the aftermath of the December 2012 gang rape case at Delhi, the Centre initially announced the allocation of Rs 10,000 crore under the Nirbhaya fund for meeting the expenditure to ensure women's safety.

"In the interest of Justice, it is just and necessary that the court by appropriate direction ensure that women safety is secured," he said and sought a direction to the state authorities to prepare an action plan to ensure 100 per cent utilization of Nirbhaya Fund in a time-bound manner. 

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