Commission states inability to trace victims for compensation

A meeting organised by south Goa Collector N. D. Agarwal on Monday to discuss the rehabilitation package for victims of the State-organised ‘Baina red-light area demolition’ remained inconclusive, as there was no representation from the Goa Rehabilitation Board.

The member secretary of the Goa State Commission for Women (GSCW), the body responsible for payment of compensation, expressed the its inability to trace the evictees.

The meeting was attended by representatives of Anyay Rahit Zindagi (ARZ), the Mormugao Municipal Council (MMC) and the Department of Women and Child Development (DWCD), organisations which were directed to deal with different categories of demolition victims, as per a January 2013 directive of the Bombay High Court at Goa.

The member secretary of the GSCW said that she did not have details of the applications submitted by sex workers seeking compensation.

The GSCW, according to the High court directive, was expected to deal with such cases.

She said that she only had a list of 10 persons who had been recommended by the Mormugao Deputy Collector.

Representatives of ARZ, a Mormugao-based NGO associated with the rehabilitation of sex workers, said that there were around 900 women who had faced eviction and several had approached ARZ in applying for compensation. Hence, it was improbable that only 10 women had been selected.

Arun Pande of ARZ told the Hindu that the NGO had sought to know the basis for rejecting the remaining applicants.

The GSCW member secretary said she had no information in this regard.

ARZ disclosed that among the 10 women selected, one was a brothel keeper and should not have been considered under the scheme.

ARZ shared documents that among the 10 women, five had written petitions and visited the GSCW, but had not received compensation to date. ARZ requested the GSCW to provide information about the remaining four so that the NGO could trace them.

The collector suggested that the GSCW assist ARZ by providing documents to trace the four women.

A representative from the MMC, which is responsible for compensation to commercial establishments damaged in the demolition, said they had not received any application.

In response, the DWCD representative informed the gathering that all the applications received by the department were forwarded to the concerned authorities. He provided the list of applicants who had applied for compensation to commercial establishments.

Mr. Agarwal asked the MMC representative to take necessary action.

  • Goa State Commission for Women says only 10 women are eligible for compensation

  • Mormugao Municipal Commision’s claim of not receiving applications refuted