December 14, 2016: The Delhi High Court has ruled that child born out of rape is entitled to compensation and that includes ‘maintenance and support’.
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A bench of Justices Gita Mittal and R K Gauba said that a child who is born out of rape “is clearly a victim of the act of the offender and entitled to compensation independent of the amount of compensation paid to his/her mother”.
They further said that the “vacuum” in the law came to the attention of the court when it was hearing the appeal of a man raping his minor step-daughter who gave birth at the age of 14 years.
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According to PTI, “Ironically, the high court, which had earlier laid down a law in this regard, reduced the amount of compensation to the rape victim from Rs 15 lakh awarded by the trial court to Rs 7.5 lakh, saying the higher amount went against the 2011 compensation scheme formulated by the Delhi government. It also faulted the trial court by giving a go-by to the guidelines for maintaining confidentiality of the rape victim.”
According to The Indian Express report, “NGO HaQ Center for Child Rights co-director Bharti Ali told the judgment would set a precedent for expedited compensation to child victims of sexual abuse”.
Ali further said, “This is the first time that rights of a child born out of rape have been considered. So far, we had been struggling to get compensation for the rape victims, since courts are reluctant to grant it till the trial is over.”
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In 2014, the rape victim had given birth to a boy. On the basis of DNA test, the trial court had convicted which proved that he is the father of the child.
The court also clarified that the man will remain behind bars for the remainder of his natural life, saying, “We see no scope for any ruth (pity) in the matter of punishment”.
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