The Bombay High Court on Wednesday said it would consider if it should direct the Maharashtra government to hike the compensation to victims of rape and other offences against women under a scheme from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 10 lakh. Under the Manodhairya Yojana launched in October 2013, the state government gives Rs 3 lakh as compensation to the victims of rape and other crimes against women.
Apart from the monetary compensation, the government provides counselling to the victims and vocational or educational training, if required. While the compensation is fixed for all such cases, the high court has said that the compensation should be decided on a case-to-case basis. A division bench of Chief Justice Manjula Chellur and Justice G S Kulkarni was today hearing a petition filed by a 14-year-old girl, who claims to be a victim of rape, seeking compensation of Rs 3 lakh.
Watch what else is making news
The girl’s lawyer told the court that while the Maharashtra government offers only Rs 3 lakh as compensation, the Goa government gives Rs 10 lakh. Justice Chellur said it would consider this issue at a later stage. The girl, a resident of suburban Borivali, claimed that she was raped by a man under the false pretext of marriage. The government, however, refused to grant her compensation claiming that she had given consent to sex and hence, no offence of rape was made out.
Justice Chellur said, “I am disturbed and shocked to hear the government say that it was consensual. She (victim) is 14-year-old. Do you think she has the maturity to give consent or understand the consequences thereof? Even if she has consented, it still amounts to rape under law.” The bench directed the Mumbai Suburban Collector to remain personally present, along with details of the Manodhairya scheme, before the court for hearing on the matter next week.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines