Financial Assistance And Support Services To Victims Of Rape: A Scheme For Restorative Justice

Rape is one of the most violent forms of crimes against women, which not only impacts her bodily integrity but, in the long-run, impairs her capacity to develop meaningful personal and social relationships, and affects her life and livelihood.

The victim of rape suffers mental and psychological trauma, which must be addressed so that she is able to lead a dignified and meaningful life.

While no amount of financial assistance can adequately compensate for the injury, both physical and emotional, faced by a victim of rape, the Ministry formulated a Scheme ‘Financial Assistance and Support Services to Victims of Rape’ to provide a helping hand to enable her to cope with the trauma suffered and to tide over her immediate and long-term needs. It is founded on the principle of restorative justice and seeks to restore the affected woman to a position of dignity and self-confidence. The scheme proposes to cover women and minor girls who are victims of rape.

In furtherance of the goal of ensuring restorative justice, the proposed Scheme provides for:

  • Financial assistance to the affected woman; and
  • Support services such as shelter, counselling, medical aid, legal assistance, education and vocational training depending upon the needs of the victim

The proposed Scheme also envisages the setting up of Criminal Injuries Relief and Rehabilitation Boards at the District, State and Central levels for consideration of claims and ensuring effective coordination between all stakeholders. The priority of the Ministry is to encourage the States/UTs to take up proactive implementation and the effort would be geared to encouraging them to take ownership of the Scheme.

To orient various stakeholders about the provisions of the scheme and to draw up guidelines for implementation, 3 Regional Workshops were conducted at Bangalore, Kolkatta & Delhi.

The scheme is awaiting the approval of the Planning Commission on modalities of transfer of funds to the States/UTs.

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