Only Rs.2 crore of the Rs. 15 crore given in the last three years
A Right to Information reply given to sexual assault victims by the Delhi Government under the Delhi Victims’ Compensation Scheme, 2011, has revealed that it has paid only about Rs.2 crore of the allotted Rs.15 crore in the last three years.
The scheme, which provides compensation to victims of cases such as acid attack and rape, was notified on February 2, 2012.
The RTI reply obtained by non-profit organisation Pratidhi reveals that 778 beneficiaries from 2011 to 2013 received Rs.2,60,16,394 from the government.
In pursuance of Article 357A of the CrPC, the Delhi Government had notified the scheme for providing funds for compensating survivors or their dependants who suffered loss or injury as a result of crime and those requiring rehabilitation.
A victim is liable to get compensation only after the Delhi Legal Services Authority (DLSA) recommends it. “First, the area SHO shares the FIR with the Secretary of the district. Then it reaches the DLSA. After it recommends it, the case reaches the Delhi Government, which gives sanction to cases it deems fit. The compensation is then released by the Divisional Commissioner,” said a DLSA official.
Sources, however, have revealed that most victims do not receive compensation as files get stuck with the Divisional Commissioner.
The Hindu spoke to the family of a rape victim. The father of a four-year-old girl who was raped by her neighbour at Kalyanpuri in East Delhi said: “My daughter was seriously injured after she was raped in August 2013. The policemen told us that we will get money for her treatment and we thought the expenses would be met. I am a peon and cannot afford much.”
“We were hoping to get Rs.30,000 as compensation, but never received it. Every time I go to the office of the Divisional Commissioner, I am asked to come some other time,” he said.
According to DLSA data, the Authority had recommended 201 cases in 2013 for compensation, but merely 38 cases received sanction and the compensation is yet to be released.
The Delhi High Court had recently directed the Delhi Government to make people aware of the scheme. It issued the order after counsel for Centre Meera Bhatia told the court that most victims were not aware of their right to be compensated from the fund or even the existence of such a fund.
“We direct the Government counsel to file an affidavit declaring the total number of cases in each category so that the proportion of cases in which claims have been preferred can be gauged,” the High Court had also said.
The matter will now come up before the court on March 12.