Govt rolls out scheme to help minor rape survivors | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
close_game
close_game

Govt rolls out scheme to help minor rape survivors

By, New Delhi
Jul 04, 2023 12:08 AM IST

According to National Crime Records Bureau data, 51,863 cases were reported under the Pocso Act in 2021, and of them, 33,348 or 64% cases were of sexual assault

The Centre has approved a scheme that will provide support to minor rape survivors who have been abandoned by their family, often due to pregnancy, and have no other means to support themselves, the women and child development (WCD) ministry announced on Monday.

Government to bring a new scheme to support minor rape survivors who have been abandoned by their families due, often due to pregnancy. (ANI)
Government to bring a new scheme to support minor rape survivors who have been abandoned by their families due, often due to pregnancy. (ANI)

The “scheme for critical care and support for accessing justice to rape/gang rape survivors or minor girls who get pregnant” will provide shelter, food, safe transportation for court hearings, and legal aid, the ministry said. A fund of 74.1 crore has been allocated for the scheme, it added.

Hindustan Times - your fastest source for breaking news! Read now.

“Recognising the physical and emotional trauma that the minor victims of aggravated sexual assault undergoes, and in some cases, they become pregnant, we in the ministry have decided to provide medical, infrastructure and financial support to such minor victims under aegis of the Nirbhaya scheme,” women and child development minister Smriti Irani said.

“We have additionally leveraged the administrative structure of Mission Vatsalya in collaboration with state governments and child care institutions (CCIs) to actualise this support to minor victims on the ground,” she added.

This additional support will be available at child care institutions for those up to the age of 18 and thereafter up in aftercare facilities up to the age of 23, Irani said. “The government has accelerated access to justice for minor victims of rape by establishing 415 Pocso fast-track courts in the country,” the minister added.

According to National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data, 51,863 cases were reported under the Pocso Act in 2021, and of them, 33,348 or 64% cases were of sexual assault. “99% of these 33,348 cases were committed against girls and in many of these cases girls become pregnant and bear several physical and mental health concerns, which are further aggravated when they are disowned or abandoned by their own families or are orphaned,” the ministry said in a statement.

Under the scheme, immediate, emergency and non-emergency access to a range of services including access to education, police assistance, maternity, neonatal and infant care, psychological and mental counselling, legal support and insurance cover will be provided to girl child victim and her newborn under one roof to enable access to justice and rehabilitation of such girl child victims, the ministry said.

It will not be mandatory for the girl child victim to have a copy of a first information report to avail benefits under the scheme, the ministry clarified. “However, it shall be the responsibility of the persons responsible for the implementation of the scheme to ensure that information is provided to the police and FIR is registered,” it said.

CCIs will provide a separate safe space for the girls as their needs are different from other children residing in the child care institution, the ministry said. “A case worker will be immediately designated or appointed by the person-in-charge for taking care of the girl child and separate funds shall be provided to the Home for the care and protection of the girl,” it added.

In case a survivor does not want the child at any stage, the child will stay at CCIs and will be made “available for adoption”, a ministry official said. “The girl survivor will decide that for herself,” the official said, asking not to be named. The ministry is likely to release the guidelines of the scheme in the next few days, the official added.

Unveiling 'Elections 2024: The Big Picture', a fresh segment in HT's talk show 'The Interview with Kumkum Chadha', where leaders across the political spectrum discuss the upcoming general elections. Watch Now!

Get Current Updates on India News, Himachal Pradesh News Live, Sheikh Shahjahan along with Latest News and Top Headlines from India and around the world
SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
Share this article
  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    author-default-90x90

    Fareeha Iftikhar is a Special Correspondent with the national political bureau of the Hindustan Times. She tracks the education ministry, and covers the beat at the national level for the newspaper. She also writes on issues related to gender, human rights and different policy matters.

SHARE
Story Saved
Live Score
OPEN APP
Saved Articles
Following
My Reads
Sign out
New Delhi 0C
Friday, March 01, 2024
Start 14 Days Free Trial Subscribe Now
Follow Us On