Maharashtra govt may hike compensation for sexual assault victims to Rs 10 lakh

Pankaja Munde said in keeping with a Bombay HC ruling, Maharashtra was planning to expand the scope of the Manodhairya Scheme and make it more comprehensive.

By: Express News Service | Mumbai | Updated: April 1, 2017 4:03 am

Following demands from legislators, the government Friday said it was planning to increase compensation for rape victims. Replying to a Calling Attention motion by Legislator Husnabano Khalife (Congress) and others, Minister for Women and Child Development Pankaja Munde said the state was mulling increasing the compensation for victims of rape, sexual harassment and acid attacks from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 10 lakh.

Munde said in keeping with a Bombay HC ruling, the state was planning to expand the scope of the Manodhairya Scheme and make it more comprehensive.

“The department of WCD will move a proposal to this effect for approval before the state cabinet,” the minister said. She added that with a view to extend further support to the victims, the state government shall impart skill-based training and rehabilitate them.

However, Munde told the Upper House, that it would be difficult for the state government to give compensation in cases prior to 2013, when the scheme was launched.

Raising a supplementary query, MLC Khalife called the provisions of the Manodhairya scheme “insulting” to the victims and also termed the scheme “demeaning”. “Neighbouring states like Goa provide Rs 10 lakh as compensation to the victims,” Khalife said.

To this, Munde said that the state government would consult officials of the departments concerned. He added that the state would appoint a committee of women legislators from both the Houses and seek its opinions and suggestions on the issue.

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