Allahabad HC directs UP Govt to include the victims of Section 7, 9 and 11 of POCSO Act 2012, under Victims Compensation Scheme [Read the Judgment]

Allahabad HC directs UP Govt to include the victims of Section 7, 9 and 11 of POCSO Act 2012, under Victims Compensation Scheme [Read the Judgment]

Allahabhad High Court in Guriya Swayam Sevi Sansthan Thru Its President Vs. Union Of India Thru Principal Secy. & 5 Others directed the state government to constitute a Victims Compensation Fund under Section 357A of Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC) for the enforcement of Rule 7(4) of Protection of children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Rules, 2012, to cover the Sections 7, 9 and 11, while only Section 4, 6, and 14 is covered under present scheme.

Earlier, in an order dated 4th May 2015, the court had asked the government to rectify this omission “whether it was an inadvertent mistake or otherwise”. In the counter affidavit filed by the government in response to that order, said that all necessary steps to include the said sections of POCSO have been made. It is stated that a Victims Compensation Fund has been notified on 6th February 2015 and budget of Rs. 2 crores is also allocated. But these decision has been pending before the Cabinet for approval.

The PIL, which received appreciation from the Bench, was filed by an organization which is active in the fight against human trafficking, especially forced labour and commercial sexual exploitation of minor girls and children in the State of Uttar Pradesh. The Division Bench Comprising, D.y Chandrachud C.J and M.K. Gupta J, observed that, “There is absolutely no reason or justification to exclude offences under Sections 7, 9 and 11 from the purview of the fund in addition to the provisions of Sections 4, 6 and 14. All the victims of these offences would be in need of beneficial rehabilitation. The setting up of the fund is an important instrument of ensuring rehabilitative relief to the victims of these offences.”

The fund is now being placed under the control of the Secretary of the State Legal Service Authority. It is directed by the court that the state should formulate adequate schemes to comply with the order and to award compensation to child victims. Regarding future budgetary allocation, the court empowered the Secretary of the State Legal Services Authority to make a request through the Registrar General to the State Government for appropriate measures. The court has set a two months time limit to comply with the orders after completing the whole procedural formalities.

Read the Judgment here