25 October, 2020

Maharashtra Scheme To Compensate Rape Survivors Has Delivered A Lot Less Than Promised

The BJP-led Mah­a­rashtra government launched Manodhairya Yojana with much fanfare and made it its showcase initiative, offering a compensation of Rs 3 lakh to rape and acid-attack survivors, to be given in instalments.

Illustration by Sajith Kumar
Maharashtra Scheme To Compensate Rape Survivors Has Delivered A Lot Less Than Promised

A couple stretched out for the night on a soiled bedspread on a footpath, hardly attracting a second glance in this city of strangers. The children—dau­ghters aged six, four and two—were tucked in between the parents. The father, 28, couldn’t keep his eyes shut. He would pull himself up at the slightest sound of a footstep and check on his eldest child, who was lured by a neighbour to his shack in a Mumbai slum and raped nearly two years ago. They had to ret­urn to the city this January to appear before the court that is hearing the case. This was their first night since arriving in a stifling general coach of a train from Calcutta.

The family’s last tryst with Mumbai was horrifying. In January 2016, the fat­her had joined a small unit that did zari embroidery on saris, but had to leave the city just two months later when his eldest child was sexually ass­aulted. Seeking justice for his daughter and the compensation promised under the Maharashtra government’s financial assistance scheme for the rehabilitation of rape and...



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