The Trinamool Congress government in West Bengal and the State Legal Services Authority (SLSA) on Monday faced the ire of Calcutta High Court’s Chief Justice Prakash Srivastava over delay in payment of compensation to the family members of a minor girl who was raped and murdered at Hanskhali in Nadia district in April this year.
While hearing a PIL in this matter, Srivastava observed that despite clear-cut court instructions on this count, even the minimum compensation has not been paid to the victim’s family till date.
He also criticised the SLSA for its repeated appeals to postpone the dates of the hearing in the matter.
“We expect the SLSA to be more sensitive in such cases. There is an attempt to bypass the matter by resorting to some opaque arguments. The common people are suffering because of this. Why does the SLSA appear in court without any specific instructions on such counts? The process cannot move with such lackadaisical approach. When there is a definite scheme for victim compensation, why is the process being delayed? The SLSA will have to inform the court by Tuesday as to what it is going to do and what it has done so far in the matter, which cannot be delayed for an indefinite period,” Srivastava observed.
To recall, on May 5 this year, Anindya Sundar Das, whose petition led the Calcutta High Court to order a CBI probe into the alleged gang-rape and murder of a 14-year-old girl in Hanskhali, filed a petition demanding an interim compensation of Rs 1 crore for the family of the victim.
The minor girl was allegedly gang-raped on April 4. Due to excessive bleeding, her family members tried to take her to a hospital, but the father of the prime accused, who is now in CBI custody, allegedly used strong arm tactics to prevent them.
On April 12, the high court had directed the CBI to take up the matter. Since then, the investigating agency has made several arrests. Among those arrested is a Trinamool Congress leader who is the father of the prime accused. His henchmen and the friends of his son, allegedly involved in the crime, have also been arrested.