Saturday, March 19, 2011

Decide on compensation for ’02 rape victims: HC

Ahmedabad: The Gujarat high court has asked the state government and the Centre to decide on whether they intend to pay compensation to rape victims of the 2002 riots.
Acting on different public interest litigations, a bench headed by the chief justice has asked counsels representing the governments to state whether any decision has been taken regarding payment to rape victims. Next hearing in this case will be on May 2.
During the post-Godhra riots, there were complaints of rape and molestation by mobs in major massacres like Naroda Patia and Gulbarg Society. In many of the trials that are going on in special courts of SIT, the section of 376(2)(g), which is for gang rape, figures in the charge draft.
Meanwhile, the state government submitted details of disbursement of compensation among riot victims. As per the report, a total amount of Rs 463.10 crore has been disbursed among riot victims towards death, injury, damage to residential property and maintenance of livelihood sources. In 1,163 cases of death, compensation of Rs 5 lakh had been paid. However, in six cases the amount could not be given because the victims could not be identified till date. And out of the 2,548 injured persons, the government is yet to pay 35 persons.
There were 29,467 complaints about damage to residential property. The government has given Rs 289.10 crore to them. However, payment has not been made in 360 cases, and the state government has claimed that this is because of lack of details and other reasons. Out of 19,373 cases of damages to uninsured commercial property, payment has been made to all except in 355 cases. The governments have released Rs 83.68 crore towards this.
After the government submitted the details, the court asked the government to find out if there were more cases of riots victims and it could take help of NGOs in finding out victims, there are any left out in this process.

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