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Report No. 154

Issue No. 15-Victimology

Views of Judges

While supporting the concept of victimology the Judges of the High Courts (8:1) have suggested that if compensation is to be awarded under section 357 of the Code, the Magistrate or the Court concerned should be empowered to direct the State to pay compensation to the victim of assault because in many a case the accused persons are too poor to pay the compensation. The Judges of district courts and subordinate courts have also supported the proposal by a majority of 25 to 30.

In this respect it may also be relevant to point out that the historical pronouncement of the Allahabad High Court made on 9-2-1996 in the Civil Writ Petitions No. 32982 of 1994, 39919, 39920, 39921, 40216 and 40752 of 1994 filed by Shri Sudhir Chaptiyal, Dev Raj Kapoor and others on behalf of the Uttrakhand Sangharsh Samiti against State of Uttar Pradesh has laid down guidelines for victim compensation. Similarly Twenty-five out of Twenty-seven judges of subordinate judiciary have welcomed this proposal.

Views of Police Officers

The proposal of victimology has been welcomed by the police officers also who say that action has already been taken by the governments in providing rehabilitation, re-employment to victims of SC and ST related offences. Shri C. Anjenaya has also suggested that not less than 75% of the amount of penalty should be paid to the victim of assault by way of compensation.

Views of Advocates

The lawyers have approved this proposal by saying that it is a step in the right direction. Shri K.T.S. Tulsi has suggested that section 357 needs to clarified in respect of awarding compensation at the stage of plea bargaining or compounding of offences and the order in that regard must be made enforceable as a decree of court.

Views of Academicians

Professor K.N. Chandrashekharan Pillai has observed that even without an amendment to section 357 of the Code, it is possible for the courts to award compensation. Today the State is also made liable to pay compensation under public law (see Neelazvati Behara alias Lalita Behara v. State of Orissa, AIR 1993 SC 1960). Professor A.K. Saxena has suggested that it will not be possible for the State of provide compensation to all the victims claiming compensation as it will put a huge financial burden upon society in the shape of taxes. But when the compensation is to be paid by the convict through his earnings under forced labour he will be automatically reformed and will be deterred from becoming a habitual criminal.

The Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 Back

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