Ramakanta Biswas

The Orissa High Court has directed the State government to pay Rs 10 lakh as compensation to a 20-year-old girl who became pregnant after she was gang raped.

A bench of Justice SK Panigrahi said the State Legal Services Authority shall ensure that the  State  government  pay  an  amount  of Rs 10,00,000 as compensation to the victim. 

“This amount shall be over and above the compensation amount, if any, the learned Trial Court may direct to be paid to the victim  and/or  her  child  at  conclusion  of  the  trial  in  the underlying proceedings,” the court clarified.

Keeping the welfare of the mother and child and the parents of the victim, the bench directed the District Collector, Cuttack to ensure that  arrangements are made to provide proper diet, medical  supervision and medicines as may be necessary, to the  victim throughout the remaining part of her journey of  pregnancy. 

“When the time for delivery arrives, proper  medical facilities be made available for a safe delivery of  the child,” the court said.  

As per the details, the girl, a resident of Bania village under Baideswar police limits of Cuttack district while returning to her house on April 14, 2021 was gagged by a towel and forcibly taken to the nearby school where accused persons raped her and threatened to kill her if she disclosed the matter to her family members or police.

While delivering the judgment, Justice SK Panigrahi said, "Justice is the sum of all moral duty" as observed  by William Godwin who is considered to be one of the first exponents of utilitarianism, justly articulates the relevance in the  present case. The Courts are duty bound to come to the rescue of  the victims and alleviate their mental agony and suffering  especially in cases where there is a lacuna in the law.”