Uttar Pradesh Congress chief Rita Bahuguna Joshi and Chief Minister Mayawati may be fighting each other over the former’s derogatory remarks against the latter. But unwittingly, both are on the same side of the debate.
While Joshi condemned the state government over distribution of cheques among Dalit rape victims, Mayawati on Thursday vowed to do away with the law providing for compensation to Dalit rape victims.
“The BSP government does not approve of this law as it hurts the self-esteem of the Dalit community members,” Mayawati said.
She added, “The Congress government did not announce compensation to the rape victims belonging to other communities. If the BSP comes to power at the Centre it will repeal the law.
A new Act would be brought to ensure that rapists and those accused of murder get harsh punishment.”
Dalit ideologues, social activists and intellectuals however do not agree with the views of either Joshi or Mayawati.
While ensuring justice to rape victims, the government should give compensation to poor victims, they said.
Dalit ideologue Ramkumar said: “A victim not only endures trauma and agony after the rape, a working woman has to endure economic losses too.”
“The compensation not only helps the victim belonging to the weaker section to fight the case in the court but also meet the daily expenses till she comes out of the trauma,” he said.
Retired IPS officer and office bearer of the Ambedkar Mahasabha S.R. Darapuri said that though the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act came into shape in 1989, the rules were framed in 1995.
Since Dalits are deprived people, it was decided that compensation should be given to the rape victim.
The fund is released by the Central Government.