The Centre is drawing up a scheme to compensate the victims of terrorism and communal violence to help them get their lives back on track. The scheme will cover loss of or, more importantly, damage to property in terrorist attacks like serial blasts and communal violence.
Earlier this year, the government unveiled a scheme to provide Rs 3 lakh to next-of-kin of those who died in terror attacks or communal riots. The aim was to ensure that the victims did not get alienated or desperate. But the scheme did not cover damage to property.
The Home Ministry has realised in the wake of the recent attacks on places of worship and minorities in Orissa, Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh that the government had left open a wide gap in its attempt to apply balm to the wounds of the victims.
More than 150 places of worship have been burnt down in the three states over the last few weeks though the casualty figures are not disproportionately high. “In Karnataka, the minorities have been at the receiving end from outfits like the Bajrang Dal for weeks, but those victims would not get covered under any scheme because there has been no death,” said a senior home ministry official.
But it is not going to be easy to firm up a scheme that delivers on the government’s intentions. “We are still discussing what the formula should be: whether it should be related to the value of the property or be one fixed rate of compensation for permanent structures and another for temporary structures,” the official said.