SC seeks details of compensation under Nirbhaya fund

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed all states and union territories to give details on the payment of Nirbhaya and other funds as compensation to the victims of sexual offences and acid attacks.

The bench of Justice Madan B. Lokur and Justice Deepak Gupta gave them four weeks to comply with the order.

The Nirbhaya fund was created in 2013, in the wake of the Delhi December 2012 gang rape case, for “protecting the dignity and ensuring safety of women in India”.

The court also asked the National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) to prepare Model Rules for Victim Compensation for sexual assault and acid attacks and gave it six weeks’ time.

NALSA has already set up a committee to frame the rules that would be applied across the country.

The committee consists a nominee each of the Women and Child Development Ministry, Law and Justice Ministry and amicus curiae Indira Jaising.

The court, in the last hearing of the matter on October 12, 2017, had asked the NALSA to set up the committee of four to five people and said it should take into account the submission by Jaising.

It said the Chairperson or the nominee of the Chairperson of the National Commission for Women should be associated with the Committee and had asked its report to be filed on or before December 31, 2017.

During the October 4 hearing, Jaising had informed the court that she has analysed all the Victim Compensation Schemes and has taken out the best practices from each one of them to formulate a scheme.

In an earlier hearing of the matter, the top court had said that there was lack of awareness about the victim compensation scheme and that is why the money allocated under Nirbhaya fund was not being utilised.

In one of the earlier hearings, the top court had asked the central government to spell out the manner in which Nirbhaya fund – for safety and empowerment of women – would be given to the states saying that otherwise it would be reduced to a “lip service”.