SC Directs Gujarat Govt to Pay Rs 50 Lakh Compensation to Godhra Rape Survivor Bilkis Bano

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A pregnant Bilkis Bano was gangraped on March 3, 2002 while fleeing the violence in the aftermath of the Godhra train burning in Gujarat. — PTI

The Supreme Court also directed the Gujarat government to get Bilkis a state government job and provide her accommodation at a place of her choice.

Caravan News

NEW DELHI — The Supreme Court of India on Tuesday directed the Gujarat government to rehabilitate and pay Rs 50 lakh in compensation to Bilkis Yakub Rasool, who was gang-raped at the age of 21 in 2002 during the post-Godhra riots.

A bench comprising of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna, expressed concern about the victim after learning that she had been living a nomadic life, and has been surviving on charity.

A pregnant Bilkis Bano was gangraped on March 3, 2002, in Randhikpur village, while fleeing the violence in the aftermath of the Godhra train burning in Gujarat. Fourteen members of her family were killed.

The apex court also rubbished Gujarat government counsel’s contention that the compensation was too high for the victim, and instead she should be given Rs 10 lakh.

Earlier, she was given Rs 5 lakh compensation from the state.

The Supreme Court also directed the Gujarat government to get her a state government job and provide her accommodation at a place of her choice.

The top court had earlier asked the Gujarat government to take disciplinary action in two weeks against the erring police officials, including an IPS officer, convicted by the Bombay High Court in the case.

The Gujarat government counsel also informed the top court that three guilty officials, who tried to tamper with evidence in the Bilkis Bano gang rape case, have been stripped off entire pensionary benefits, and an IPS officer has been demoted by two ranks.

A special court had on January 21, 2008 convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment 11 men for raping Bano and murdering seven of her family members in the aftermath of the Godhra riots, while acquitting seven persons including the policemen and doctors, giving them the benefit of doubt.

(With inputs from IANS)

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