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Mst X (Through Mother And Natural … vs State And Ors on 13 May, 2021

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* IN THE HIGH COURT OF DELHI AT NEW DELHI

Date of decision: 13th May, 2021

+ W.P.(CRL) 1419/2020

MST. X (THROUGH MOTHER AND NATURAL GUARDIAN)
….. Petitioner
Through: Ms. Prabhsahay Kaur, Advocate.

versus

STATE ORS. ….. Respondents
Through: Ms. Nandita Rao, ASC (Criminal)
with Ms. Gayatri Virmani and
Mr. Amit Peswani, Advocates for the
State.
Mr. Zeeshan Hashmi, Advocate for
respondent No. 2.
Mr. Sumeet Chaudhary, Advocate for
respondent No. 3.
CORAM:
HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE ANUP JAIRAM BHAMBHANI

J U D G M E N T

ANUP JAIRAM BHAMBHANI, J.

The petitioner, a boy aged about 06 years, has filed the present
petition through his mother and natural guardian, impugning order dated
19.08.2020 made by the learned Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) (POCSO),
Saket Courts, New Delhi in CIS SC No. 66/2020 arising from FIR No.
645/2019 registered under
sections 377/506 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860
(‘
IPC’, for short) read with section 6 of the Protection of Children from

Signature Not Verified
Signed By:SUNITA RAWAT
Location:

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Sexual Offences Act, 2012 (‘POCSO Act’, for short) at P.S.: Mehrauli, New
Delhi, whereby the learned Sessions Court has awarded to the petitioner,
who was the victim of the offence, interim compensation of Rs. 50,000/-.

2. By way of a brief background, the proceedings arise from the
petitioner/victim having been subjected to sexual assault, abuse and
sodomy by his uncle in the victim’s own house. The prosecution of
the accused is underway and is presently at the stage of prosecution
evidence, which is scheduled on 18.05.2021. It is stated in the petition
that the victim belongs to an extremely weak financial background,
with a mother who works as a housemaid and washes utensils in
people’s homes and a bed-ridden father who is unable to work due to
his medical condition. As per status report dated 27.07.2020 filed by
the Investigating Officer before the learned ASJ the family’s monthly
household income is about Rs.6,000/- in which 04 members of the
family are to sustain.

3. Ms. Prabhsahay Kaur, learned counsel appearing on behalf of the
petitioner contends that order dated 19.08.2020 made by the learned
ASJ in CIS SC No. 66/2020 (‘impugned order’, for short) is flawed
inasmuch as in awarding interim compensation of Rs. 50,000/-, the
learned ASJ has only taken into account the expected expenditure that
the victim may incur. In sum and substance, it is Ms. Kaur’s
contention that the learned ASJ has failed to appreciate that, even at
the interim stage, compensation is to be granted to a minor who is
victim of sexual abuse, to enable the victim and his family to
overcome the incident and to compensate for the damaging effect on

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the victim’s psyche and to help rehabilitate the victim into society; for
‘relief’ and ‘rehabilitation’; and not merely to cover for the expenses
to be incurred for the time being. Learned counsel further contends
that treating the Delhi Victim Compensation Scheme 2018 (‘DVC
Scheme 2018’, for short) as a benchmark, interim compensation
awarded should have been somewhere between Rs. 6 lacs and
Rs.10.50 lacs; since under the applicable entry of the Schedule to Part
II of the DVC Scheme 2018, a minimum compensation of Rs.4 lacs
and a maximum compensation of Rs.7 lacs has been prescribed for
unnatural sexual assault, with a further provision that such minimum
and maximum compensation shall stand increased by 50% if the
victim is a minor. It is contended that this is in accord with the
decision of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Nipun Saxena Anr. Vs.
Union of India Ors.1, in which case it was inter alia directed that
the National Legal Services Authority Compensation Scheme as
approved by the Hon’ble Supreme Court w.e.f. 02.10.2018 should
function as a guideline for the special courts to award compensation
for a victim of child sexual abuse under Rule 7 of Protection of
Children from Sexual Offences Rules 2012, (‘2012 Rules’, for short)
which rule has now been replaced by Rule 9 of Protection of Children
from Sexual Offences Rules, 2020 (‘2020 Rules’, for short).

4. Notice in this petition was issued on 07.09.2020; whereupon
Ms. Nandita Rao, learned Additional Standing Counsel (Criminal)
appeared on behalf of the State (Government of NCT of

1
(2019) 13 SCC 715

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Delhi)/respondent No.1 and pointed-out that though the Delhi Victim
Compensation Scheme is funded by the Government of NCT of
Delhi, the scheme is administered by the Delhi State Legal Services
Authority (‘DSLSA’ for short); and that therefore it is necessary to
implead DSLSA as a party-respondent to the present proceedings.
Accordingly, DSLSA was impleaded as party-respondent No. 3 in the
matter. The accused/respondent No. 2 is represented by Mr. Zeeshan
Hashmi, Advocate.

5. Subsequently, pleadings in the matter were completed; and counsel
for the parties were heard at length.

Impugned Order

6. In summary, the following portions of the impugned order may be
noticed to appreciate the considerations and reasoning employed by
the learned ASJ :

“Medical Treatment
The child Victim ‘S’ was sodomized by his own uncle
repeatedly. Child is not going to the school and belongs to a poor
family. The child requires to be rehabilitated. His psychological
counseling also requires to be undertaken in view of the
observations made by CWC. Since CWC has already issued
directions regarding psychological counseling by IHBAS, no further
directions are required from the Court at this stage. CWC may
review the counseling reports periodically (may be every 3/6
months depending upon frequency of meetings of the Victim with
the doctors) and in case the Victim requires such medical
intervention which cannot be provided free of cost by IHBAS or
any other medical institution, a report may be filed before this
Court with prayer for grant of interim compensation for medical
intervention. No recommendation for interim compensation on this

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Location:

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court is required at this stage in the considered view of the Court.
The case reported in newspapers wherein Delhi Govt. reportedly
granted compensation of Rs.10 Lakhs to the Victim is different from
this one as the Victim in the said case is reported to be critical and
battling for life.

Education
Now coming to the second part i.e. compensation for
education of the child Victim. It is reported by the IO that the child
belongs to a very poor family. IO has reported that monthly income
of the family of the Victim is only about Rs.6,000/-. It is averred in
the application that family of the Victim earns Rs.10,000/-monthly.
The Victim is traumatized and parents are scared of sending him to
school without proper security. Parents do not have sufficient
money to arrange for a good school where these aspects can be are
taken care of. The Victim is six years old, and shall be attending
primary school now. This need of the child victim is imminent and
immediate. So the amount of interim compensation has to be
awarded keeping in mind all these factors, and the probable amount
that may be required for imparting education to the Victim in a
primary school.

Decision
Considering the level of education that shall be imparted to
the child Victim, interim compensation in the sum of Rs.50,000/-
shall be an appropriate amount at this stage, in considered view of
the Court. Court recommends accordingly. Compensation shall be
disbursed as per rules.”

(underscoring supplied; bold in original)
Statutory landscape

7. The statutory framework and judicial precedents that are required to
be noticed for purposes of the present petition are set-out herein-
below. The general legal provision relating to payment of

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Location:

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compensation to victims of crime is
section 357A of the Code of
Criminal Procedure, 1973 (‘
Cr.P.C.’, for short) and reads as under :

Section 357A Cr.P.C.

“357A. Victim compensation scheme.– (1) Every State
Government in co-ordination with the Central Government shall
prepare a scheme for providing funds for the purpose of
compensation to the victim or his dependents who have suffered loss
or injury as a result of the crime and who require rehabilitation.

(2) Whenever a recommendation is made by the Court for
compensation, the District Legal Service Authority or the State
Legal Service Authority, as the case may be, shall decide the
quantum of compensation to be awarded under the scheme referred
to in sub-section (1).

(3) If the trial Court, at the conclusion of the trial, is satisfied,
that the compensation awarded under
Section 357 is not adequate
for such rehabilitation, or where the cases end in acquittal or
discharge and the victim has to be rehabilitated, it may make
recommendation for compensation.

(4) Where the offender is not traced or identified, but the
victim is identified, and where no trial takes place, the victim or his
dependents may make an application to the State or the District
Legal Services Authority for award of compensation.

(5) On receipt of such recommendations or on the application
under sub-section (4), the State or the District Legal Service
Authority shall, after due enquiry award adequate compensation by
completing the enquiry within two months.

(6) The State or the District Legal Services Authority, as the
case may be, to alleviate the suffering of the victim, may order for
immediate first-aid facility or medical benefits to be made available
free of cost on the certificate of the police officer not below the rank
of the officer in charge of the police station or a Magistrate of the
area concerned, or any other interim relief as the appropriate
authority deems fit.”

(emphasis supplied)

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8. Specifically in relation to compensation to children who are victims
of sexual offences, the provisions of the POCSO Act and POCSO
Rules provide as follows :

Section 33 POCSO Act

“33. Procedure and powers of Special Court.–

(1) *****
(8) In appropriate cases, the Special Court may, in addition to
the punishment, direct payment of such compensation as may be
prescribed to the child for any physical or mental trauma caused to
him or for immediate rehabilitation of such child.”

(emphasis supplied)

Rule 7 POCSO Rules, 2012

“7. Compensation. – (1) The Special Court may, in
appropriate cases, on its own or on an application filed by or on
behalf of the child, pass an order for interim compensation to meet
the immediate needs of the child for relief or rehabilitation at any
stage after registration of the First Information Report. Such interim
compensation paid to the child shall be adjusted against the final
compensation, if any.

(2) The Special Court may, on its own or on an application
filed by or on behalf of the victim, recommend the award of
compensation where the accused is convicted, or where the case
ends in acquittal or discharge, or the accused is not traced or
identified, and in the opinion of the Special Court the child has
suffered loss or injury as a result of that offence.

(3) Where the Special Court, under sub-section (8) of section
33 of the Act read with sub-sections (2) and (3) of
section 357A of
the Code of Criminal Procedure, makes a direction for the award of
compensation to the victim, it shall take into account all relevant
factors relating to the loss or injury caused to the victim, including
the following:–

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(i) type of abuse, gravity of the offence and the severity of
the mental or physical harm or injury suffered by the
child;

(ii) the expenditure incurred or likely to be incurred on his
medical treatment for physical and/or mental health;

(iii) loss of educational opportunity as a consequence of the
offence, including absence from school due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation
and trial of the offence, or any other reason;

(iv) loss of employment as a result of the offence, including
absence from place of employment due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation
and trial of the offence, or any other reason;

(v) the relationship of the child to the offender, if any;

(vi) whether the abuse was a single isolated incidence or
whether the abuse took place over a period of time;

(vii) whether the child became pregnant as a result of the
offence;

(viii) whether the child contracted a sexually transmitted
disease (STD) as a result of the offence;

(ix) whether the child contracted human immunodeficiency
virus (HIV) as a result of the offence;

(x) any disability suffered by the child as a result of the
offence;

(xi) financial condition of the child against whom the offence
has been committed so as to determine his need for
rehabilitation;

(xii) any other factor that the Special Court may consider to
be relevant.

(4) The compensation awarded by the Special Court is to be
paid by the State Government from the Victims Compensation Fund
or other scheme or fund established by it for the purposes of
compensating and rehabilitating victims under section 357A of the

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Location:

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Code of Criminal Procedure or any other laws for the time being in
force, or, where such fund or scheme does not exist, by the State
Government.

(5) The State Government shall pay the compensation ordered
by the Special Court within 30 days of receipt of such order.

(6) Nothing in these rules shall prevent a child or his parent
or guardian or any other person in whom the child has trust and
confidence from submitting an application for seeking relief under
any other rules or scheme of the Central Government or State
Government.”

(emphasis supplied)

Rule 9 POCSO Rules, 2020
“9. Compensation.– (1) The Special Court may, in
appropriate cases, on its own or on an application filed by or on
behalf of the child, pass an order for interim compensation to meet
the needs of the child for relief or rehabilitation at any stage after
registration of the First Information Report. Such interim
compensation paid to the child shall be adjusted against the final
compensation, if any.

(2) The Special Court may, on its own or on an application
filed by or on behalf of the victim, recommend the award of
compensation where the accused is convicted, or where the case
ends in acquittal or discharge, or the accused is not traced or
identified, and in the opinion of the Special Court the child has
suffered loss or injury as a result of that offence.

(3) Where the Special Court, under sub-section (8) of section
33 of the Act read with sub-sections (2) and (3) of
section 357A of
the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) makes a
direction for the award of compensation to the victim, it shall take
into account all relevant factors relating to the loss or injury caused
to the victim, including the following:-

(i) type of abuse, gravity of the offence and the severity of
the mental or physical harm or injury suffered by the
child;

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Location:

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(ii) the expenditure incurred or likely to be incurred on
child’s medical treatment for physical or mental health
or on both;

(iii) loss of educational opportunity as a consequence of the
offence, including absence from school due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation
and trial of the offence, or any other reason;

(iv) loss of employment as a result of the offence, including
absence from place of employment due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation
and trial of the offence, or any other reason;

(v) the relationship of the child to the offender, if any;

(vi) whether the abuse was a single isolated incidence or
whether the abuse took place over a period of time;

(vii) whether the child became pregnant as a result of the
offence;

(viii) whether the child contracted a sexually transmitted
disease (STD) as a result of the offence;

(ix) whether the child contracted human immunodeficiency
virus (HIV) as a result of the offence;

(x) any disability suffered by the child as a result of the
offence;

(xi) financial condition of the child against whom the offence
has been committed so as to determine such child’s need
for rehabilitation;

(xii) any other factor that the Special Court may consider to
be relevant.

(4) The compensation awarded by the Special Court is to be
paid by the State Government from the Victims Compensation Fund
or other scheme or fund established by it for the purposes of
compensating and rehabilitating victims under
section 357A of the
Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 or any other law for the time

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Location:

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being in force, or, where such fund or scheme does not exist, by the
State Government.

(5) The State Government shall pay the compensation ordered
by the Special Court within 30 days of receipt of such order.

(6) Nothing in these rules shall prevent a child or child’s
parent or guardian or any other person in whom the child has trust
and confidence from submitting an application for seeking relief
under any other rules or scheme of the Central Government or State
Government.”

(emphasis supplied)

It may be noted that Rule 9 of the 2020 Rules is verbatim the
same as Rule 7 of the 2012 Rules.

Nipun Saxena vs. Union of India

9. The authoritative judicial pronouncement on the issue is that of the
Hon’ble Supreme Court in
Nipun Saxena vs. Union of India 2 , in
which judgment the Hon’ble Supreme Court set the tone for grant of
compensation to minors who are victims of sexual offences. It is
pertinent to note that though several orders were passed in Nipun
Saxena (supra), order dated 05.09.2018 made by a 3-Judge Bench of
the Hon’ble Supreme Court is the one that is relevant for purposes of
the present proceedings.

10. In order dated 05.09.2018 made by it, the Hon’ble Supreme Court
recorded that under its directions the National Legal Services
Authority (‘NALSA’ for short) had drawn-up the NALSA’s
Compensation Scheme for Women Victims/Survivors of Sexual

2
(2019) 2 SCC 703

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Assault/other Crimes-2018 (‘NALSA Scheme 2018’, for short) but no
scheme of a similar nature had been framed in so far as children were
concerned. In this backdrop and in the context of section 33(8) of the
POCSO Act, which provides for payment of compensation to children
who are victims of sexual offences, and further noticing Rule 7 of the
2012 Rules, the Hon’ble Supreme Court observed as follows:

“6. On a reading of the aforesaid rule, it appears to us that the
Special Court may, in appropriate cases, on its own or on an
application having been filed, pass an order for interim
compensation for the immediate needs of the child. Of course, this
rule is a gender neutral provision.

*****
“8. In the interim, therefore, the situation is that there are no
guidelines or rules that are applicable on the basis of which the
Special Court can pass appropriate orders.
“9. Keeping the hiatus in mind, we are of the opinion, after hearing
the learned counsel for the parties as well as the learned Additional
Solicitor General, that NALSA’s Compensation Scheme should
function as a guideline to the Special Court for the award of
compensation to victims of child sexual abuse under Rule 7 until the
Rules are finalised by the Central Government.
“10. The Special Judge will, of course, take the provisions of the
POCSO Act into consideration as well as any circumstances that
are special to the victim while passing an appropriate order.
“11. We need not emphasise that the legislation is gender neutral
and, therefore, the guidelines will be applicable to all children.”

(emphasis supplied )

Approving the NALSA Scheme 2018 for women victims
in the above order, the Hon’ble Supreme Court further directed that
the said scheme would be operational from 02.10.2018.

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11. Subsequently, the DVC Scheme 2018 came to be framed on
27.06.2019 and was brought into retrospective operation w.e.f.
02.10.2018, i.e. the same date on which the NALSA Scheme for
women victims was made operational by the Hon’ble Supreme Court.
The relevant portions of the DVC Scheme 2018 are extracted below
for ease of reference.

DVC Scheme 2018 : Part-I

“Part-I

2. DEFINITIONS — (1) In this Scheme, in Part-I, unless
the context otherwise requires:-

(g) “Offence” means any of the offences mentioned in
the Indian Penal Code, 1860 (45 of 1860) or in any other
law for the time being in force;

*****

(k) “Victim” means a person who has suffered loss or
injury as a result of the offence and in the case of his death,
the expression ‘victim’ shall mean to include his or her
guardian or legal heir;

*****

3. VICTIMS COMPENSATION FUND — (1) There shall
be a Fund, namely, the Victims Compensation Fund, from which
the amount of compensation, as decided by the Delhi State Legal
Services Authority or District Legal Services Authority, shall be
paid to the victims or their dependent(s) who have suffered loss
or injury as a result of an offence and who require
rehabilitation.

(2) The ‘Victims Compensation Fund’ shall comprise the
following:-

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(a) Budgetary allocation in the shape of Grants-in-aid to
DSLSA for which necessary provision shall be made in the
Annual Budget by the Government;

(b) Receipt of amount of fines imposed (under section 357
of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) and
ordered to be deposited by the courts in the Victims
Compensation Fund.

(c) Amount of compensation recovered from the
wrongdoer/accused under clause 14 of the Scheme;

(d) Amount of compensation returned by the person
receiving the compensation as per Form ‘II’ if any;

(e) Donations/contributions from
International/National/Philanthropist/Charitable Institutions/
Organizations and individuals.

(f) Contributions received from Companies under Section
135 of the Companies Act, 2013.

(3) The said Fund shall be operated by the Delhi State
Legal Services Authority (DSLSA).”

4. ELIGIBILITY FOR COMPENSATION — The victim or
his/her dependent(s), as the case may be, shall be eligible for the
grant of compensation after satisfying the criteria that he/she
should not have been compensated for the loss or injury under
any other scheme of the Central Government or the
Government: …”

13. INTERIM RELIEF TO THE VICTIM – The Delhi State
Legal Services Authority or District Legal Services Authority, as the
case may be, may order for immediate first-aid facility or medical
benefits to be made available free of cost or any other interim relief
(including interim monetary compensation) as deemed appropriate,
to alleviate the suffering of the victim on the certificate of a police
officer, not below the rank of the officer-in-charge of the police
station, or a Magistrate of the area concerned or on the application
of the victim/ dependents or suo moto:

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Provided that the, interim relief so granted shall not be more
than Rs.50,000/- (Rupees Fifty thousand) in any case except in
cases of extreme hardship and gravity of the offence where an order
may be passed for the reasons to be recorded in writing:

* Provided further that in cases of acid attack a sum of Rs.
One lakh shall be paid to the victim within fifteen days of the matter
being brought to the notice of DSLSA/DLSA. The order granting
interim compensation shall be passed by the DSLSA/DLSA within
seven days of the matter being brought its notice and the DSLSA
shall pay the compensation within eight days of passing of order.
Thereafter an additional sum of Rs.two lakhs shall be awarded and
paid to the victim as expeditiously as. possible and positively within
two months.”

DVC Scheme 2018 : Part-II
“Part-II
This part shall be called “Compensation Scheme for Women
Victims/Survivors of Sexual Assault/Other Crimes”

*****

2. DEFINITIONS –

1) In this Part, unless the context otherwise requires:–

(g) ‘Women Victim Compensation Fund’ — means a fund
segregated for disbursement for women victim, out of State
Victim Compensation Fund and Central Fund.
Within the State Victim Compensation Fund, a separate Bank
Account shall be maintained as a portion of that larger fund
which shall contain the funds contributed under CVCF Scheme
by MHA, GOI contributed from Nirbhaya Fund apart from funds
received from the State Victim Compensation Fund which shall
be utilised only for victims covered under this Chapter
*****

(i) ‘Injury’ means any harm caused to body or mind of a
female.

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(j) ‘Minor’ means a girl child who has not completed the
age of 18 years.

*****

(p) ‘Woman Victim/ victim of other crime’ means a woman
who has suffered physical or mental injury as a result of any
offence mentioned in the attached Schedule including
Sections
304 B,
Section 326A, Section 498A IPC (in case of physical
injury of the nature specified in the schedule) including the
attempts and abetment.

*****

3. WOMEN VICTIMS COMPENSATION FUND–

(1) There shall be a Fund, namely, the Women Victims
Compensation Fund from which the amount of compensation, as
decided by the Delhi State Legal Services Authority or District
Legal Services Authority, shall be paid to the women victim or
her dependent (s) who have suffered loss or injury as a result of
an offence and who require rehabilitation.

*****

4. ELIGIBILITY FOR COMPENSATION –

A woman victim or her dependent (s) as the case may be,
shall be eligible for grant of compensation from multiple
schemes applicable to her. However, the compensation received
by her in the other schemes with regard to
Section 357-B
Cr.P.C., shall be taken into account while deciding the quantum
in the such subsequent application.

*****

7. RELIEFS THAT MAY BE AWARDED BY THE STATE
OR DISTRICT LEGAL SERVICES AUTHORITY. –

The DSLSA or DLSA may award compensation to the
victim or her dependents to the extent as specified in the
scheduled attached hereto.

8. FACTORS TO BE CONSIDERED WHILE AWARDING
COMPENSATION –

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While deciding a matter, the Delhi State Legal Services
Authority/District Legal Services Authority may take into
consideration the following factors relating to the loss or injury
suffered by the victim:

(1) Gravity of the offence and severity of mental or
physical harm or injury suffered by the victim;

(2) Expenditure incurred or likely to be incurred on the
medical treatment for physical and/or mental health including
counselling of the victim, funeral, travelling during
Investigation/ inquiry/trial (other than diet money);

(3) Loss of educational opportunity as a consequence of
the offence, including absence from school/college due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation and trial
of the offence, or any other reason;

(4) Loss of employment as a result of the offence,
including absence from place of employment due to mental
trauma, bodily injury, medical treatment, investigation and trial
of the offence, or any other reason;

(5) The relationship of the victim to the offender, if any;
(6) Whether the abuse was a single isolated incidence or
whether the abuse took place over a period of time;

(7) Whether victim became pregnant as a result of the
offence, whether she had to undergo Medical Termination of
Pregnancy (MTP)/give birth to a child, including rehabilitation
needs of such child;

(8) Whether the victim contracted a sexually transmitted
disease (STD) as a result of the offence;

(9) Whether the victim contracted human
immunodeficiency virus (HIV) as a result of the offence;

(10) Any disability suffered by the victim as a result of the
offence;

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(11) Financial condition of the victim against whom the
offence has been committed so as to determine her need for
rehabilitation and re-integration needs of the victim.

(12) In case of death, the age of deceased, her monthly
income, number of dependents, life expectancy, future
promotional/growth prospects etc.
(13) Or any other factor which the DSLSA/DLSA may
consider just and sufficient.

9. PROCEDURE FOR GRANT OF COMPENSATION–
(1) Wherever, a recommendation is made by the court for
compensation under sub-sections (2) and/or (3) of
Section 357A
of the Code, or an application is made by any victim or her
dependent(s), under sub-section (4) of
Section 357A of the Code,
to the Delhi State Legal Services Authority or District Legal
Services Authority, for interim compensation it shall prima-
facie satisfy itself qua compensation needs and identity of the
victim. As regards the final compensation, it shall examine the
case and verify the contents of the claim with respect to the
loss/injury and rehabilitation needs as a result of the crime and
may also call for any other relevant information necessary for
deciding the claim.

Provided that in deserving cases and in all acid attack
cases, at any time after commission of the offence, Member
Secretary or Special Secretary, DSLSA or Secretary, DLSA may
suo moto or after preliminary verification of the facts proceed to
grant interim relief as may be required in the circumstances of
each case.

(2) The inquiry as contemplated under sub-section (5) of
Section 357A of the Code, shall be completed expeditiously and
the period in no case shall exceed beyond sixty days from the
receipt of the claim/petition or recommendation:

Provided that in cases of acid attack an amount of Rupee
One lakh shall be paid to the victim within 15 days of the matter
being brought to the notice of DLSA. The order granting interim
compensation shall be passed by DLSA within 7 days of the

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matter being brought to its notice and the DSLSA shall pay the
compensation within 8 days of passing of the order. Thereafter,
an amount of Rs. 2 lakhs shall be paid to the victim as
expeditiously as possible and positively within two months of the
first payment*
Provided further that the victim may also be paid such
further amount as is admissible under this Scheme.

(3) After consideration of the matter, the DSLSA or DLSA,
as the case may be, upon its satisfaction, shall decide the
quantum of compensation to be awarded to the victim or her
dependent(s) taking into account the factors enumerated in
Clause 8 of the Scheme, as per schedule appended to this Part.
However, in deserving cases, for reasons to be recorded, the
upper limit may be exceeded.

Moreover, in case the victim is minor, the limit of
compensation shall be deemed to be 50% higher than the
amount mentioned in the Schedule appended to this Part.

(4) The DSLSA/DLSA may call for any record or take
assistance from any Authority/Establishment/lndividual/
Police/Court concerned or expert for smooth implementation of
the Scheme.

(5) In case trial/appellate court gives findings that the
criminal complaint and the allegations were false, then Legal
Services Authority may initiate proceedings for recovery of
compensation, if any, granted in part or full under this Scheme,
before the Trial Court for its recovery as if it were a fine.”

*****

11. METHOD OF DISBURSEMENT OF
COMPENSATION —

(1) The amount of compensation so awarded shall be
disbursed by the DSLSA by depositing the same in a Bank in the
joint or single name of the victim/dependent(s). In case the
victim does not have any bank account, the DLSA concerned
would facilitate opening of a bank account in the name of the
victim and in case the victim is a minor along with a guardian or

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in case, minor is in a child care institution, the bank account
shall be opened with the Superintendent of the Institution as
Guardian. However, in case the victim is a foreign national or a
refugee, the compensation can be disbursed by way of cash
cards.

Interim amount shall be disbursed in full. However, as
far as the final compensation amount is concerned, 75%
(seventy five percent) of the same shall be put in a fixed deposit
for a minimum period of three years and the remaining 25%
(twenty five percent) shall be available for utilization and initial
expenses by the victim/dependent(s), as the case may be.

(2) In the case of a minor, 80% of the amount of
compensation so awarded, shall be deposited in the fixed
deposit account and shall be drawn only on attainment of the
age of majority, but not before three years of the deposit.

Provided that in exceptional cases, amounts may be
withdrawn for educational or medical or other pressing and
urgent needs of the beneficiary at the discretion of the DSLSA/
DLSA.

(3) The interest on the sum, if lying in FDR form, shall be
credited directly by the bank in the savings account of the
victim/dependent(s), on monthly basis which can be withdrawn
by the beneficiary.

12. INTERIM RELIEF TO THE VICTIM–

The Delhi State Legal Services Authority or District Legal
Services Authority, as the case may be, may order for immediate
first-aid facility or medical benefits to be made available free of
cost or any other interim relief (including interim monetary
compensation) as deemed appropriate, to alleviate the suffering
of the victim on the certificate of a police officer, not below the
rank of the officer-in-charge of the police station, or a
Magistrate of the area concerned or on the application of the
victim/ dependents or suo moto.

Provided that as soon as the application for compensation
is received by the DSLSA/DLSA, a sum of Rs.5000/- or as the
case warrants up to Rs. 10,000/- shall be immediately disbursed

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to the victim through preloaded cash card from a Nationalized
Bank by the Secretary, DLSA or Member Secretary,
DSLSA/Special Secretary, DSLSA.

Provided that the, interim relief so granted shall not be
less than 25 per cent of the maximum compensation awardable
as per schedule applicable to this Part, which shall be paid to
the victim in totality.

Provided further that in cases of acid attack a sum of Rs.
One lakh shall be paid to the victim within 15 days of the matter
being brought to the notice of DSLSA/DLSA. The order granting
interim compensation shall be passed by the DSLSA/DLSA
within 7 days of the matter being brought to its notice and the
DSLSA shall pay the compensation within 8 days of passing of
order. Thereafter an additional sum of Rs.2 lakhs shall be
awarded and paid to the victim as expeditiously as possible and
positively within two months.”

*****
Note: As per Order of Hon’ble Supreme Court of lndia in
W.P. (C) No. 565/2012 titled Nipun Saxena Anr. Vs. Union of
India Ors. dated 05.09.2018, it is clarified that this Part shall
also function as a Guideline to the Special Court for the award
of compensation to victims of child sexual abuse under
Section
33(8) of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act,
2012 and under Rule 7 of Protection of Children from Sexual
Offences Rules, 2012 until the Rules are finalized by the
Central Government. The Special Judge will take the provisions
of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012
into consideration as well as any circumstances that are special
to the victim while passing an appropriate order. The guidelines
will be. applicable to all children as the legislation is gender
neutral. The Special Judge will also pass appropriate orders
regarding actual physical payment of the compensation or the
interim compensation so that it is not misused or mis-utilized
and it actually available for the benefit of the child victim. If the
Special Judge deems it appropriate, an order of depositing the
amount in an interest-bearing account may be passed.”

(emphasis supplied)

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12. It is extremely important to point-out that the above-quoted Note
appearing at the end of Part-II of the DVC Scheme 2018 is in
complete contradiction to Explanation appended to the end of the
NALSA Scheme 2018 relating to compensation for women victims,
which Explanation reads as follows :

“Explanation: It is clarified that this Chapter does not apply to
minor victims under POCSO Act, 2012 in so far as their
compensation issues are to be dealt with only by the Ld. Special
Courts under Section 33(8) of POCSO Act, 2012 and Rules (7) of
the POCSO Rules, 2012.”

(emphasis supplied)

13. Accordingly, as of date, the issues raised by way of the present
petition are covered by
section 357A of the Cr.P.C., section 33(8) of
the POCSO Act read with Rule 9 of the 2020 Rules, the DVC Scheme
and the mandate of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Nipun Saxena
(supra).

Factual backdrop

14. In the backdrop of the above-referred statutory landscape, it is argued
that the petitioner moved an application dated 07.01.2020 before the
learned ASJ under section 33(8) of the POCSO Act read with Rule
7(2)(3) of the 2012 Rules (as were applicable at that time) seeking
interim compensation in accordance with the DVC Scheme 2018. It is
submitted that all requisite details of the financial status, family
income, gravity of the offence, physical and psychological impact and
personal harm resulting from the offence were set-out in this

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application as required. Through the Investigating Officer, the State
filed reply dated 10.02.2020 to this application.

15. Subsequently a second application dated 25.02.2020 was also filed
before the learned ASJ seeking compensation; to which the
Investigating Officer filed another reply dated 27.07.2020. It is
pointed-out that the second application came to be filed since the
learned ASJ had not decided the question of interim compensation
despite the first application having been moved; but in any case even
in the first application the petitioner had furnished all required factual
information as per the parameters set-out in Form-B, viz. the
Preliminary Assessment Report, that are required to be filed by the
police under the 2020 Rules. Attention of this court is drawn to the
fact that in replies dated 10.02.2020 and 27.07.2020 the petitioner’s
difficult family situation was verified and confirmed by the
Investigating Officer. In fact, in reply dated 27.07.2020 the
Investigating Officer had this to say:

“Hon’ble court also directed to file the status report regarding
financial condition of Victim and his family. In this regard, it is
submitted that on enquiry, it came to know the financial condition of
victim family is very poor. In the family, Mumtaz (mother of Victim)
w/o Hilala Sheikh R/o H. N. 1064, Ward No.07, Mehrauli is only
doing a job of house cleanliness and earning Rs.6,000/- per month
and residing in rented accommodation and paying rent Rs.3,000/-
per month. Hilal Sheikh (Father of Victim) has not been working
since 2-3 years due to health problem.”

(emphasis supplied)

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16. Vidé its report dated 05.03.2020 given in the matter, the Child
Welfare Committee (‘CWC’) that assessed the situation of the minor
said this:

“CSJ has been appointed as Support Person. Report from CSJ is
still awaited. The child is traumatized and has gone into a shell and
barely interacts with anyone with obvious trust issues and constant
feeling of helpness (sic). The child needs counselling by
psychologist.

*****

— Director, IHBAS is directed to examine the case of the child and
provide psycho/counseling treatment. The child may be admitted in
IHABAS if required.

*****
BBA is further requested to submit the status of release of victim
compensation.”

(emphasis supplied)

The above report of the CWC is also extracted in the impugned
order.

17. Attention of the court is further drawn to the petitioner’s statement
recorded under
section 164 Cr.P.C., in which, after observing that she
was satisfied that the minor was making his statement voluntarily
without any pressure or influence of any kind, the learned
Metropolitan Magistrate records the responses of child which prima
facie, and subject of course to being tested during trial, confirm the
very serious nature of allegations that the minor has made against his
uncle, who he colloquially calls ‘jamai’ while identifying him by
name.

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18. Counsel for petitioner has further drawn attention of this court to the
following judicial pronouncements whereby Co-ordinate and Larger
Benches of other High Courts have awarded compensation to minor
victims of crime, which it is submitted, is commensurate to the
offence committed, unlike in the present case. A brief reference to the
decision of other courts may be made at this point:

(i) In Lalsuonglien Others vs. State of Manipur3, which was a
case of sodomy committed on five minor boys, relying on the
verdict of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Nipun Saxena (supra)
and the NALSA Scheme 2018, a Co-ordinate Bench of the
Hon’ble High Court of Manipur awarded interim compensation
in the sum of Rs. 7 lacs to each of the victims in 2019.

(ii) By order dated 01.08.2019 in Re: Alarming Rise in the Number
of Reported Child Rape Incidents4, in what came to be referred
to as the Unnao Rape case, the Hon’ble Supreme Court granted
Rs. 25 lacs by way of interim compensation to some of the
victims.

(iii) Vidé judgment dated 21.03.2016 in The Minor through
Guardian Zareen vs. State (Govt. of NCT of Delhi)5, which was
a case of brutal sexual assault on a 13-year old boy, a Division
Bench of this court enhanced the compensation awarded by the

3
2019 SCC OnLine Mani 164
4
Order dated 01.08.2019 in Suo Moto Writ Petition (Criminal) No.1/2019
5
Judgment dated 21.03.2016 in W.P. (Crl.) No.798/2015

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Juvenile Justice Board under
section 357A of the Cr.P.C. from
Rs. 50,000/- to Rs. 3,00,000 with the following reasoning:

“11. Ms. Kapur, points out that initially, when the writ petition
was filed, a direction was sought to the respondent to declare
the schedule of Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2011 as
far as it related to victims of child abuse and assault as
unconstitutional. A direction was also sought to reformulate
the scheme with an enhanced and more rational scheme of
compensation. During the pendency of this writ petition, the
Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2011 was replaced with
the Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2015.
“12. Be that as it may at this stage counsel for the petitioner
and counsel for the State are in agreement that the scheme
would not be applicable with respect to cases under The
Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012
(POCSO Act – hereinafter referred to as ‘Act’). However, Ms.
Kapur, learned counsel for the petitioner submits that
necessity of approaching this court has arisen for the reason
that the Special Court while deciding the question of
compensation, has relied upon terms of the Delhi Victims
Compensation Scheme 2011 and granted Rs.50,000/- as
compensation as according to the Special Court, this was the
maximum amount which could have been awarded as per
Delhi Victims Compensation Scheme 2011.

*****
“14. We have heard the counsel for the parties. Two questions
arise for consideration before this Court. First, whether there
was any restriction upon the trial court while granting
compensation to the petitioner. The second question is
whether adequate compensation has been granted in the facts
of the present case.

“15. In the present case, in our view, the learned trial court
has wrongly relied upon the Delhi Victims Compensation
Scheme, 2011, and granted only Rs.50,000/- to the victim.”

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*****
“19. Reading of
Section 357(A) of the Code of Criminal
Procedure would show that the legislature in its wisdom has
referred to a victim or its dependants who has suffered a loss
or injury as a result of crime and who require rehabilitation.
“20. The definition under
Section 357(A) is very wide and
would in fact even cover cases which are covered under The
Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012 but
then the reading of
Section 33 of the Act would show that the
power has been given to the Special Court to grant
compensation and there is no outer limit which has been
fixed while granting the compensation.”

*****
“22. During the pendency of this writ petition, we had
directed the petitioner to file a subsequent affidavit which
would enable the court to ascertain the loss suffered by the
victim and to enable the court to grant compensation. Rule 7
of POCSO Rules provides the factors which are to be taken
into consideration while awarding the compensation. Rule 7
has been reproduced hereinabove. One of the prime factor to
be considered is the gravity of the offence. In this case, the
gravity of the offence can be ascertained from the fact that the
victim was 13 years of age at the time when the offence took
place. He was studying in Class-9. He was called outside the
classroom by force by 4 students of Class – 9, 11 and 12 who
abducted the boy, took him to a jungle and thereafter attacked
him and he was brutally sexually assaulted and penetrating
with a stick. The petitioner not only suffered physically but
also mentally. He was forced to change his school and his
family was also traumatised.

“23. In view of the facts and circumstances of the present
case, compensation granted to the victim is enhanced to Rs.
3,00,000/- (total). The petition stands disposed of.”

(emphasis supplied)

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(iv) Following the mandate of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in Nipun
Saxena (supra), vidé judgment dated 06.03.2020, a Co-ordinate
Bench of this court in Mother Minor Victim No.1 2 vs. State
Ors. 6 has held that since no special scheme for awarding
compensation to victims under the POCSO Act has been framed,
the NALSA Scheme 2018 is required to serve as a guideline for
award of compensation to victims of offences under the POCSO
Act.

19. Responding on behalf of the the State (Government of NCT of Delhi),
Ms. Nandita Rao, learned Additional Standing Counsel (Criminal)
agrees that the DVC Scheme 2018 is not binding on the learned ASJ,
especially in view of the settled judicial view taken on the issue by a
Division Bench of our own High Court in The Minor through
Guardian Zareen (supra). However, Ms. Rao argues that in the
present case, no basis was provided in the application under section
33(8) of the POCSO Act for calculating the compensation to be paid,
which is why the learned ASJ has awarded the minimum threshold
amount of Rs.50,000/- provided under the DVC Scheme 2018.
Furthermore, it is submitted that in clause 11(2) of Part II of the DVC
Scheme 2018 it is stipulated that in case of a minor, 80% of the
compensation awarded is to be deposited in a fixed deposit account,
which amount can be drawn only after the victim attains majority; and
in any case not before 03 years of the deposit, except in exceptional
cases for educational or medical or other pressing needs of the

6
Judgement dated 06.03.2020 in W.P. (Crl.) 3244/2019

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beneficiary, at the discretion of the DSLSA. Counsel accordingly
argues that even if a higher amount had been awarded to the
petitioner, it would not have been available to him for the purposes
cited in the application.

20. Mr. Sumeet Chaudhary, learned counsel appearing on behalf of
respondent No.3/DSLSA has adopted the arguments made by Ms.
Rao; and agrees that the learned ASJ is not bound by the DVC
Scheme 2018.

21. In so far as respondent No.2/accused is concerned, Mr. Zeeshan
Hashmi, learned counsel appearing on his behalf submits that
respondent No.2 has nothing to say in the matter since it is the
conceded position that compensation payable to the victim, at least at
the interim stage, is not to be recovered from the accused.

22. Contradicting the submissions made on behalf of the State, Ms. Kaur
points-out that in application dated 25.02.2020 filed under section
33(8) of the POCSO Act claiming interim compensation, the
petitioner had in fact set-out, item-wise, all required information as
envisaged in Rule 7 of Rules 2012 (as was then applicable); which
information was substantially also contained in the earlier application
dated 07.01.2020 filed under
section 33(8). Counsel emphasises that
in fact in CWC report dated 05.03.2020, as also in replies dated
10.02.2020 and 27.07.2020 filed by the Investigating Officer, the
petitioner’s impecunious circumstances and traumatic condition stand
confirmed. Ms. Kaur submits that a perusal of the record would also

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leave no manner of doubt as to the heinousness of the offence to
which the petitioner was subject.

Discussion and Conclusions

23. This court has given its anxious consideration to the matter and the
submissions made on behalf of the parties. Upon a conspectus of the
foregoing statutory framework, the position that emerges in relation to
a minor who is victim of crime is the following :

(a) While section 357 of the Cr.P.C. provides for payment of
‘compensation’ to a victim from out of the ‘fine’ imposed by a
court as part of the sentence awarded to a convict,
section 357A
of the Cr.P.C. contemplates payment of compensation to a victim
under a Victim Compensation Scheme that is required to be
formulated by every State Government in co-ordination with the
Central Government.;

(b) Compensation under section 357A Cr.P.C. is to be paid,
principally in two ways : one, on the recommendation of a court
under
section 357A(2) or section 357A(3) of the Cr.P.C; and
two, on an application made by a victim under
section 357A(4)
Cr.P.C. to the State or District Legal Services Authority for
award of compensation;

(c) In a case involving crime against a minor, regardless of gender,
section 33(8) of the POCSO Act provides for payment of
compensation to the victim. The word ‘compensation’ has not
been defined in the
Cr.P.C. nor in the POCSO Act nor in the
POCSO Rules nor in the DVC Scheme. However, whatever

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connotation is attached to the word ‘compensation’ would also
attach to the phrase ‘interim compensation’, which would mean
compensation paid at the interim stage of the proceedings in a
given matter ;

(d) The word ‘victim’ has been defined in section 2(wa) Cr.P.C. to
include the guardian or legal heir of the victim; but
section 357A
Cr.P.C. contemplates the filing of an application by a victim or
his dependants;

(e) In addition to section 33(8) of the POCSO Act, w.e.f. from
09.03.2020, Rule 9 of 2020 Rules also applies to payment of
compensation;

(f) Insofar as the State of Delhi is concerned, if a victim applies for
compensation to the DLSA or DSLSA, the concerned authority
is required to assess and pay compensation under and in
accordance with the DVC Scheme 2018; however, if a victim
applies for compensation under
section 33(8) before the special
POCSO court, the DVC Scheme 2018 is not binding but serves
merely as a ‘guideline’ for the court to assess and pay
compensation, whether at the interim or final stage. This position
is in conformity with the mandate of the Hon’ble Supreme Court
in Nipun Saxena (supra);

(g) Rule 9 of the 2020 Rules empowers a court to award interim
compensation in appropriate cases, on its own or on an
application filed by a victim, to meet the immediate needs or for
relief or rehabilitation, at any stage after registration of the FIR;

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which interim compensation is to be adjusted against the final
compensation awarded;

(h) Furthermore under Rule 9(2), the court, on its own or on an
application filed by the victim, is also empowered to recommend
the award of compensation, whether the accused is convicted or
even acquitted or discharged or remains untraced or unidentified,
if in the opinion of the court, the victim has suffered loss or
injury as a result of the offence;

(i) Although the DVC Scheme 2018 and the NALSA Scheme 2018
are in pari materia, there is a critical difference between the said
two schemes insofar as their applicability to minors is concerned.
While the Explanation appended to Part II of the NALSA
Scheme 2018 reads as under:

“Explanation: It is clarified that this Chapter does not apply
to minor victims under POCSO Act, 2012 in so far as their
compensation issues are to be dealt with only by the Ld.
Special Courts under Section 33(8) of POCSO Act, 2012 and
Rules (7) of the POCSO Rules, 2012.”

(emphasis supplied)
But, quite contrarily, the Note appended to Part II of the
DVC Scheme 2018 reads as follows:

“Note: As per Order of Hon’ble Supreme Court of lndia in
W.P. (C) No. 565/2012 titled Nipun Saxena Anr. Vs. Union
of India Ors. dated 05.09.2018, it is clarified that this Part
shall also function as a Guideline to the Special Court for
the award of compensation to victims of child sexual abuse
under
Section 33(8) of Protection of Children from Sexual
Offences Act, 2012 and under Rule 7 of Protection of

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Children from Sexual Offences Rules, 2012 until the Rules
are finalized by the Central Government. The Special Judge
will take the provisions of the Protection of Children from
Sexual Offences Act, 2012 into consideration as well as any
circumstances that are special to the victim while passing an
appropriate order. The guidelines will be. applicable to all
children as the legislation is gender neutral. The Special
Judge will also pass appropriate orders regarding actual
physical payment of the compensation or the interim
compensation so that it is not misused or mis-utilized and it
actually available for the benefit of the child victim. If the
Special Judge deems it appropriate, an order of depositing
the amount in an interest-bearing account may be passed.”

(j) Although, a contrary observation appears in judgment dated
06.03.2020 of a Co-ordinate Bench of this court in Mother Minor
Victim No 1 and 2 (supra) to the effect that no special scheme
has been framed for awarding compensation to victims under the
POCSO Act and therefore the NALSA Scheme would serve as a
guideline for the purpose, it would appear that the Co-ordinate
Bench was not apprised that for the State of Delhi there already
exists a DVC Scheme 2018 and that the Note appended to Part II
thereof, as extracted above, specifically says that that part of the
DVC Scheme 2018 would function as a guideline for award of
compensation to victims of child sexual abuse under the POCSO
Act. While the observations of the Hon’ble Supreme Court in
Nipun Saxena (supra) were evidently made in relation to the
entire country, and all States of the country may not have a
scheme/guidelines for award of compensation to victims under
the POCSO Act, at least insofar as the State of Delhi is

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concerned, the DVC Scheme 2018 was framed and notified on
27.06.2019 and made applicable with retrospective effect from
02.10.2018. One must hasten to add that as of now the DVC
Scheme 2018 is almost similar to the NALSA Scheme 2018, by
reason of which, in substance it makes no difference whether a
court in Delhi applies the DVC Scheme 2018 or the NALSA
Scheme 2018 as a guideline for award of compensation to a
victim under the POCSO Act; however, for obvious reasons it
would be appropriate for a court in Delhi to refer to DVC
Scheme 2018 and not the NALSA Scheme 2018, since the DVC
Scheme 2018 may be modified from time-to-time and may not
always be in pari materia with the NALSA Scheme 2018. Also
in Nipun Saxena (supra) the Hon’ble Supreme Court has
specifically said that the NALSA Scheme would apply only until
rules/guidelines are framed in that behalf by a State/Central
Government.

(k) There appears to be some dissonance and confusion insofar as
the use of the words ‘recommendation’, ‘order’ and ‘direction’ is
concerned, in that
sections 357A(2) and (3) Cr.P.C., Clause
9(1)(Part-II) of the DVC Scheme 2018 and Rule 9(2) of the 2020
Rules speak of the court making ‘recommendation’ for award of
compensation to the concerned legal service authority; but Rule
9(1) and (3) of the 2020 Rules say that the court may make an
‘order’ and ‘direction’ for award of interim compensation and
compensation respectively. In relation to payment of interim
compensation, under Rule 9(1) the court is empowered to make

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“an order for interim compensation”. To meaningfully construe
these words, in the opinion of this court, a court seized of a plea
for compensation under the POCSO Act, may in its discretion,
do one of three things: (i) if the application is for interim
compensation, the court may order payment of interim
compensation to a victim; (ii) if the application is for
compensation, the court may either recommend the award of
compensation without specifying the quantum of compensation
to be paid, leaving it to the concerned legal service authority to
quantify it in accordance with the applicable schedule of the
DVC Scheme 2018; or (iii) if the application is for
compensation, the court may direct the concerned legal service
authority to pay the compensation as quantified by it. Even a
recommendation made by a court would be binding on the legal
service authority and compensation would decidedly be payable,
except the quantum payable would be left to computed by the
authority. A direction to pay a quantified amount as
compensation, would obviously be binding with no discretion
left with the legal service authority.

(l) If a victim applies for compensation directly to the legal service
authority and not to the court, the authority would decide
whether compensation is payable, and if so in what amount,
subject to the other stipulations contained in the DVC Scheme
2018.

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(m) There should be no confusion that a decision made by the court,
whether as a ‘recommendation’, ‘order’ or ‘direction’, would be
binding on the legal service authority, subject only to the court
leaving the discretion to quantify the compensation payable to
the authority or otherwise, depending upon what is said in the
decision.

24. In the above view of the matter, in the opinion of this court, the
learned ASJ was not bound by the DVC Scheme 2018, which
scheme including the maximum and minimum compensation
envisaged in the schedule thereto, would at best serve as ‘guidelines’
for assessment of compensation payable to the petitioner.
Considering that the petitioner was subject to the offence of
‘Unnatural Sexual Assault’, for which the Schedule to Part II sets-
down the minimum limit of compensation as Rs. 4 lacs and the
upper limit of compensation as Rs. 7 lacs. Since the petitioner is a
‘minor’ for whom Clause 9 (Part-II) of the DVC Scheme 2018 says
that the minimum and maximum limits of compensation would be
deemed to be 50% higher than those mentioned in the Schedule, in
the petitioner’s case the minimum and maximum limits would stand
enhanced from Rs. 4 lacs to Rs. 6 lacs and from Rs. 7 lacs to Rs.
10.5 lacs respectively. To reiterate, these limits on the amount of
compensation payable would be binding upon the DLSA/DSLSA but
not upon the court. It may be noted that Clause 9(3) (Part II) of the
DVC Scheme 2018 even grants discretion to the DLSA/DSLSA to
say that ” … However, in deserving cases, for reasons to be
recorded, the upper limit may be exceeded.”

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25. Furthermore, the Second Proviso to Clause 12 (Part-II) of the DVC
Scheme 2018 says that the interim relief granted to a victim shall not
be less than 25% of the maximum compensation awardable as per
the Schedule and that such compensation shall be paid to the victim
in totality. Clearly therefore, if the petitioner was to approach the
DLSA/DSLSA seeking interim compensation, in accordance with
the DVC Scheme 2018, the DLSA/DSLSA would be bound to award
to the petitioner the sum of Rs. 2,62,500/- i.e. 25% of Rs. 10.5 lacs.
It needs no jurisprudential justification to say therefore, that the
court must bear this amount in mind as a benchmark while assessing
the interim compensation payable to the petitioner.

26. Insofar as the factors to be considered for quantifying interim
compensation are concerned, these would be the same as those for
assessing compensation as indicated in Rule 9(3) of the 2020 Rules
which are in pari materia with Clause 8 (Part II) of the DVC
Scheme 2018. Of course, the factors set-out in the said Rule and
Clause are not exhaustive and the court is required to “take into
account all relevant factors relating to the loss or injury caused to
the victim”.

27. A reading of the petitioner’s statement recorded under section 164
Cr.P.C on 09.12.2019 and report dated 05.03.2020 of the CWC show
that as per the allegations, the petitioner was subject to repeated
aggravated, unnatural, penetrative and oral sexual assault of different
types and was also threatened with a knife on his neck, apart from
being physically assaulted. The CWC has appointed a support person

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for the petitioner and has recorded in its report that the petitioner is
traumatised; that he has gone into a shell and hardly interacts with
anyone; and that he is suffering from trust issues and the constant
feeling of helplessness. The CWC has opined that the petitioner
needs psychological counselling and has referred him to the
Director, IHBAS, to examine the case and provide psychological
counselling and treatment; and if required, even admit the petitioner
to the institution. In replies dated 10.02.2020 and 27.07.2020 filed to
the compensation applications, the Investigating Officer has verified
and confirmed the petitioner’s impecunious circumstances, whereby
a family of 04 members is surviving on the income only of the
mother, who makes about Rs. 6,000/- per month by working as a
part-time housemaid cleaning utensils etc., of which a sum of
Rs.3,000/- per month goes towards payment of rent; and that the
petitioner’s father has not been working for the last 2-3 years due to
health problems.

28. From the petitioner’s application dated 25.02.2020 seeking
compensation, it can be gathered that the accused is the petitioner’s
uncle, who is alleged to have subjected the petitioner to the offences
as detailed above, apart from having suffered the brutal, physical
offences in what should have been the ‘safety’ of his own home, it is
not just likely but certain that the petitioner, being only a 6-year old
child, has suffered extreme psychological trauma, mental agony and
post-traumatic stress. It is further stated in the application for
compensation that the petitioner is also physically disabled in that he
is missing the proximal and distal phalanx of fourth and fifth fingers

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of his left hand. It is further stated in the application that the child is
now even afraid to attend school and his parents are scared of
sending him there, by reason of which he is at present abstaining
from school and his education is suffering.

29. Although, the learned ASJ does not give any specific basis for
assessing interim compensation at Rs. 50,000/-; she also does not say
that the said sum is in accordance with the First Proviso to Clause 13
(Part I) of the DVC Scheme 2018; nor does the learned ASJ say that
she is bound by the DVC Scheme 2018, regardless of that and in
view of the foregoing discussion, the sum of Rs. 50,000/- awarded as
interim compensation is low, to say the least. The learned ASJ
segregates the heads under which interim compensation is assessed
in two parts. One, for medical treatment, in relation to which the
learned ASJ says that since the CWC has already issued directions to
IHBAS for physiological counselling of the petitioner, no further
directions are required from the court at this stage; and that if the
petitioner requires medical intervention which cannot be provided
free of cost by IHBAS or some other medical institution, a prayer for
grant of interim compensation for medical intervention may be made
before the court. Two, the learned ASJ assesses the interim
compensation payable for the petitioner’s education; and holds that
since the petitioner would be attending primary school, Rs. 50,000/-
is an appropriate amount to take care of the probable amount that
would be required for imparting education in primary school.

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30. Before proceeding further, it would benefit at this point, to
understand the legal concept of ‘compensation’ and thereby of
‘interim compensation’ by referring to the words of the Hon’ble
Supreme Court in
Yadava Kumar vs. National Insurance Co. Ltd.
Anr.7 where, in the context of a motor accident claim, the Hon’ble
Supreme Court has very pithily explained the concept of
‘compensation’ in the following words:

“17. The High Court and the Tribunal must realise that there is a
distinction between compensation and damages. The expression
compensation may include a claim for damages but compensation is
more comprehensive. Normally damages are given for an injury
which is suffered, whereas compensation stands on a slightly
higher footing. It is given for the atonement of injury caused and
the intention behind grant of compensation is to put back the injured
party as far as possible in the same position, as if the injury has not
taken place, by way of grant of pecuniary relief. Thus, in the matter
of computation of compensation, the approach will be slightly more
broad based than what is done in the matter of assessment of
damages. At the same time it is true that there cannot be any rigid
or mathematical precision in the matter of determination of
compensation.”

(emphasis supplied)
Accordingly, while attempting to quantify the compensation
payable to the petitioner even at the interim stage, the effort of this
court should be to offer monetary recompense, to the extent possible,
for atonement of the crime to which the petitioner was subject; the
physical and mental trauma suffered by him; and the emotional scar
left on his psyche.

7

(2010) 10 SCC 341

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31. It is not hard to see that apart from the actual expenses that would be
incurred for the petitioner’s psychological counselling and treatment
at a specialised institution like IHBAS, as recommended by the CWC
in its report, it would also be necessary to put money in the hands of
the petitioner’s family, to arrange for the petitioner to safely attend
the school he was attending earlier or some other school and to cater
to his educational needs. The petitioner’s mother would need to spend
more time with him to give the petitioner emotional security, since he
was assaulted by a relative in his own home; by reason of which she
may not be able to go to work.

32. Since the system cannot turn the clock back nor ‘undo’ the offence,
there is little else the court can do other than prosecute the offender
and provide to the victim whatever psychological security and sense
of empowerment that monetary compensation can give.

33. Accordingly, upon an overall appreciation of the facts and
circumstances of the case and the legal framework within which it is
to be decided, order dated 19.08.2020 made by the learned ASJ in
case CIS SC No. 66/2020 arising from F.I.R. No. 645/2019 registered
at P.S.: Mehrauli, is set-aside; and the Delhi State Legal Services
Authority is directed to disburse and pay to the petitioner interim
compensation in the sum of Rs. 6,00,000/- (Rs. Six Lacs Only),
forthwith and in any event within 04 weeks of receipt of this order. Of
the said sum, Rs. 1,00,000/- (Rs. One Lac Only) shall be paid by the
DSLSA by way of electronic remittance into a savings bank account
held or to be opened (with DSLSA’s assistance) in the petitioner’s

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name jointly with his mother, in a nationalised bank; and the
remaining Rs. 5,00,000/- (Rs. Five Lacs Only) shall be deposited by
the DSLSA by way of a fixed deposit in the petitioner’s name with his
mother as joint holder, in a nationalised bank, initially for a period of
5 (five) years with a provision for automatic renewal for another
period of 5 (five) years, with a further provision of automatic renewal
for a period of 2 (two) years. The interest earned on such fixed
deposit shall be credited to the petitioner’s savings bank account, on a
monthly basis. The money in the savings bank account shall be
available for withdrawal and use by the petitioner through his mother;
but the petitioner or his mother shall not be permitted to break or
prematurely encash the fixed deposit(s) made, without prior
permission of this court. It is clarified that the provision for creation
of fixed deposit, of automatic renewals and non-encashment has been
made to prevent misapplication, mis-utilisation and frittering-away of
the compensation amount meant for the minor petitioner by other
members of the family; and to ensure that the money is secure till the
petitioner attains the age of 18 years, whereafter the petitioner shall be
entitled to use the money as he may decide.

34. It is further directed that the petitioner’s mother shall use and apply
the aforesaid sum of Rs. 100,000/- as also the interest received from
the fixed deposit created in the petitioner’s name, only for the benefit
and welfare of the petitioner, towards his medical, educational,
rehabilitation and other needs and requirement from time-to-time, and
not for any other purpose. If the mother wishes to use the money for
any other purpose, she may seek prior leave of this court. In the

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unfortunate event of the petitioner’s mother passing-away before the
petitioner attains majority, the surviving guardian shall be at liberty to
approach the court for the directions to secure the interests and
welfare of the minor.

35. By way of abundant clarification, the interim compensation hereby
awarded shall be subject to adjustment against the final compensation
awarded by the learned learned ASJ upon conclusion of the trial.

36. The writ petition is disposed of in the above terms.

37. Pending applications, if any, also stand disposed of.

38. A copy of this order be communicated to counsel for the parties and
also to the Secretary, DSLSA within 02 days from today, for
information and compliance.

ANUP JAIRAM BHAMBHANI, J.

13th May, 2021
Ne/uj/ds

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