The Centre has disbursed ₹200 crore each to the States to compensate sexual assault victims under the Nirbhaya fund, senior advocate Indira Jaising, the court's amicus curiae, said.
The bench said states must frame schemes to compensate victims of crime, including those of cow vigilantism as envisaged by the Code of Criminal Procedure.
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The Supreme Court has hinted that the next of kin of victims of cow vigilantism, such as the father of 15-year-old Junaid murdered by a mob in a train, were eligible for compensation from the state. Jaising also demanded a national policy for prevention of vigilantism. "There are several FIRs lodged in cases involving violence by cow vigilante groups and nothing has happened in any case", he told the bench. All states are under an obligation to compensate victims of cow vigilante violence. The bench, however, said that it would examine these reports later when all the states had filed their reports. It is a state subject. However, the court was firm in its view that "law and order has to receive primacy and anyone violating peace must face stringent action".
The direction came after the Bench was informed that only five states - Gujarat, Rajasthan, Jharkhand, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh - have filed compliance report.
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"The senior police officer shall take prompt action and will ensure vigilante groups and such people are prosecuted with promptitude", it had said. In the last hearing of the matter on September 6, the top court had said that cow vigilantism has to stop and directed states/union territories to appoint district nodal officers to take steps to prevent and act against perpetrators of such violence. The bench asked other states to submit their reports soon, scheduling the next hearing for October 31. It had ordered chief secretaries of each state to meet the directors general of police to keep highways safe.
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