The Telegraph
Thursday , September 6 , 2012
Since 1st March, 1999
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Plan: govt cash for victims of crime

Calcutta, Sept. 5: The Mamata Banerjee government has decided to frame guidelines to compensate victims of crime, mainly acid attacks, rapes and trafficking.

“The scheme is aimed at compensating victims of crime against women. The guidelines have been drawn up mainly to pay compensation to victims of rape, acid attacks and human trafficking,” a Writers’ official said.

A proposal will be placed in a cabinet meeting tomorrow. The Centre had suggested that all states frame such schemes in accordance with the provisions of the newly created Section 357A of the CrPC. The section deals with compensation schemes for victims of crime and their dependants.

“Although the Centre has not fixed any deadline for framing the scheme, Bengal is the first to prepare the plan. The proposal has been prepared by the home department, which is under the chief minister,” the official said.

“Once the scheme is notified, victims will have to be compensated according to the guidelines,” a home department official said.

The scheme will be notified after the cabinet clears it.

“The Centre proposed the scheme after an increase in crimes against women, such as acid attacks and rapes, across the country. It is good that Bengal is set to be the first state to give proper shape to the proposal,” the official said.

The state government will constitute a “victim compensation fund”. It will allot an amount for this purpose in the budget. The state and district-level secretaries of the legal services authority, under the law department, will operate the fund.

According to the proposal, the compensation will be given once it is established in a court of law that a crime has been committed against a person. The court will decide if the person is eligible for compensation under the scheme, the home official said.