SC tells Gujarat govt to pay ₹50 lakh to Bilkis Bano1 min read . Updated: 24 Apr 2019, 01:32 AM IST
- Bilkis’s family was attacked at her village in Dahod district in the aftermath of the post Godhra violence
- Counsel for Bano told the apex court that she has been living at the mercy of two NGOs who are taking care of her expenses
NEW DELHI : The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed the Gujarat government to make a payment of ₹50 lakh as compensation to Bilkis Bano, who was gang-raped during the 2002 Gujarat riots.
The special leave petition which was being heard by a bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and comprising judges Deepak Gupta and Sanjeev Khanna also ordered that Bano be provided a government job and adequate accommodation.
The bench asked, “How old is she?"
Counsel for Bano replied that “She was 21 years old when the horrific incident happened with her." She further submitted that she doesn’t want to appear as greedy but seeks a higher relief, as she has gone through “horrific situations" including the loss of her three-year-old child.
She pleaded that she was looking at an amount of ₹1crore as compensation.
Counsel for Bano told the court that the she has been living at the mercy of two NGOs who are taking care of her expenses.
Her counsel also brought to the court’s notice that the police officials who were held guilty for tampering of evidence by the Gujarat high court in this case have not been punished yet.
Bano was five months pregnant when she was gang raped. Fourteen members of her families, including her child, were killed and she was uprooted from her village. She doesn’t intend to go back to the village where the family members of her rapists live.
Bano is married now but living a nomadic life. She has been forced to change 25 houses in a span of 15 years because of threats by the convicts in her case who were out on parole.
Bano had refused to accept ₹5 lakh in compensation offered by the Gujarat government and sought an exemplary compensation in a plea to the apex court.
On 3 March, 2002, as the post-Godhra violence raged in Gujarat, Bano’s family was attacked at Randhikpur village in Dahod district as they were trying to escape rioters.
In January 2008, a special court sentenced 11 men for raping Bano and killing her family members, but acquitted seven people. The CBI approached the Bombay high court for stringent punishment while the convicted sought quashing the lower court’s order. The high court in May, 2017 convicted the 7 people. These convicted people approached Supreme Court against the high court order and the apex court dismissed the appeals in July 2017.