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Role Of Judiciary For The Protection Of Victims Right: A Study With Special Reference To Acid Attack

Role Of Judiciary For Protection Of Victims Right.

Crime affects a large number of victims who suffers physical, social, financial or emotional injury or harm which need to be promptly redressed by providing then easy access to justice. Though, the victims of crime have generally found support and assistance from their family, tribe or community they have by and large, remained forgotten person in the criminal justice administration system.

It is only in recent decades that the impact of the victimization on crime affected persons drew attention of criminal law jurisdiction around the world and they were convinced that the victims needed to be treated with compassion and their dignity and fundamental rights must be protected and preserved.

Broadly speaking victimology may be defined as the scientific study if victimisation, including the relationships between victims and offenders, the interactions between victims and the criminal justice system: that is, the police and courts, and correctional officials. It also includes connection between victims and other social groups and institutions, such as the media, business and social movements. However, the term victimology is not restricted to the study of crime-victims alone but it may extend to other forms of human rights violation that are not necessarily crimes.

Victimology has now emerged as a branch of criminology dealing exclusively with the victims of crime who need to be treated with compassion and rendered compensation and assistance under the criminal justice system. While criminology is concerned mainly with the causation of crime, victimology is primarily concerned with the study as to why people fall a victim to crime and how they can be helped and assisted against abuse of power or criminal acts of offenders through access to criminal justice system. The study also outlines the steps to be taken to prevent victimisation against crime and provide legal remedies to the victims of crime.

Crime affects the individual victims and their families. Many crimes also cause significant financial loss to the victims. The impact of crime on the victims and their families ranges from serious physical and psychological injuries to mild disturbances. The Canadian Centre of Justice Statistics states that about one third of violent crimes resulted in victims having their day-to-day activities disrupted for a period of one day (31%), while in 27% of incidents, the disruption lasted for two to three days (Aucoin & Beauchamp, 2007).

In 18% of cases, victims could not attend to their routine for more than two weeks. A majority of incidents caused emotional impact (78%). Irrespective of the type of victimization, one-fifth of the victims felt upset and expressed confusion and or frustration due to their victimization. Overall, victims felt less safe than non-victims.

For example, only a smaller proportion of violent crime victims (37%) reported feeling very safe walking alone after dark than non-victims (46%). Just less than one-fifth (18%) of women who had been victims of violence reported feeling very safe walking alone after dark when compared to their male counterparts.

The term victimology is not new. In fact, Benjamin Mendelsohn first used it in 1947 to describe the scientific study of crime victims. Victimology is often considered a subfield of criminology and the two field do share much in common. Just as criminology is the study of criminals - what they do, why they do it and how the criminal justice system respond to them - victimology is the study of victims.

Victimology, then is the study of the either (or cause) of victimization its consequences, how the other element of society, such as the media , deal with crime victims. Victimology is a science, victimologist use scientific method to answer question about victims. For example, instead of simply wondering or hypothesizing why younger people are more likely to be victims than are older people, victimologist conduct research to attempt to identify the reason why younger people seem more vulnerable.

Evolution Of The Problem: Historical Background.

[1]The origin of victimology as a part of criminology may be traced back to 1940's when founders of this bench of knowledge, notably, Mendelsohn, Von Hentig and Wolfgang initially tended to use the term to mean hapless dupes who instigated their own victimization which they termed as victim precipitation.

However, the notion of victim precipitation invoked criticism by feminists by1980's and the term 'victim' was interpreted in a wider sense to include anyone connotes anything imbalanced, exploitative, parasitical, oppressive disturbing, alienating or having inherent suffering. Thus, in the modern sense, the concept of victimology includes any person who experiences injury, loss or hardship due to cause. The term may be used in many forms such as accident victims, flood victims, famine victims, tsunami victim, blast victims and so on. The common element in all of them is some kind of suffering, injury or harm caused by forces beyond victim's control.

UN Declaration of Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power (1985)

The basic principles formulated for Justice for crime victims under the UN Declaration (1985) identified the following areas:
  1. Access to Justice and fair treatment.
  2. Restitution
  3. Compensation
  4. Assistance
Thereafter, the European Forum for Victim's Services in 1996 issued a statement of the Victim's Rights in the Process of Criminal Justice. Consequently, the Council of Europe Recommendation on assistance to crime Victims were adopted on June 14,2006.

Victimological Development in Indian Criminal Law Jurisprudence
The unsatisfactory situation with regards to protection of crime victim's rights in contrast to global development caught attention of the Law Commission of India as a result of which, it made suggestion for introduction of provisions for in its 152nd Report (1994) and 154th Report (1996).

The law Commission of India in its 154th Report on the Code of Criminal Procedure in 1996 devoted an entire chapter to Victimology in which the growing emphasis on victim's rights in criminal cases was discussed extensively. The Commission noted that increasingly, the attention of criminologist, penologist and law reformers has been directed to victimology, control of victimization and protection of victims of crimes.

The incident of crime often entails substantive harms to people and not merely symbolic harm to social order. Therefore, needs and rights of victims of crime should receive priority attention in the total response to crime. One universally recognised method of protection of victims in the compensation to victims of

Case Law: Suresh And Another V. State Of Haryana.[2]

As a matter of fact, the principles of Victimology have their root in the Indian Constitution itself. The fundamental rights enshrined in Part - III of the Constitution and directive principles of state policy in Part IV form the but work for a new social order in which social and economic justice would blossom in the national life of the country.

Though the provisions relating to compensation for crime victims are incorporated in Section 357 and 357- A of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 the award or refusal of compensation is mainly left to the discretion of the court. Besides, there are several inherent limitations as these provisions can be invoked only upon convictions of the perpetrators of crime, that too depends at the discretion of the court subject to financial capacity of the accused.

It hardly needs to be emphasized that victims have the rights to get the justice and remedy for the harm suffered as a results of crime, independent of the rights to restitution. Therefore, State must provide a mechanism to ensure that victim's rights to be compensatory for the injury caused to him is not ignored or defeated. Not only this, the compensation could be paid to the victim of crime at the earliest, irrespective of stage of enquiry or trial either on application of the victim or suo moto by the court.

Justice Malimath Committee Report (2003)

[1]Justice Malimath Committee Report on victims of Crime and reforms in Criminal Justice System (2003), inter alia observed:
Historically speaking, criminal justice system seems to exist to protect the power, privilege and values of the elite sections of society. The way crimes are defined and criminal justice system is administered, shows that there is an element of truth in the above perception even in modern times.

However, over the years dominant function of criminal justice is projected to be protecting all citizen from harm to their person or property, the assumption being that it is the primary duty of the State under the rule of law´┐Ż Criminal justice came to comprehend all about crime and criminal, the way he dealt with, the process of providing his guilty and the ultimate punishment given to him.

The civil law (of torts) was supposed to take care of the monetary and other losses suffered by the victims. Thus, victims remained marginalized and the state stood forth as the victims to prosecute and punish the accused.

The Committee found no credible reason for the provision in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 that compensation could be awarded only if the offender has been convicted of the offence with which he is charged.

The Malimath Committee in its report suggested that rights of victim to appeal against the order passed by the trial court should be further extended and rights to appeal against acquittal to the High Court should not only be limited to the prosecution but should be available to the accused as well, where prosecution declines to file the appeal.

As a result of the recommendation made by the Malimath Committee, Section 372 of Cr.P.C as amended by the Cr.P.C (Amendment) Act, 2008 now provides that the victims need not approach the prosecution for its consent or approval to file an appeal against the acquittal of the accused. Besides, a new section 357-A was inserted in the Cr.P.C by the Cr.P.C (Amendment) Act of 2008, which provides for compensation to victims of crime and protection of their constitutional rights.

Thus, it would be seen that amendment of the Code of Criminal Procedure in 2008, made a true beginning towards statutory recognition and protection of victim's rights under criminal justice system in India and now it is for the courts and criminal law administrators to ensure the implementation of this law in true spirit.

International Approach For Protection Of Victim's Right:

[1]England was perhaps the first country to adopt a statutory scheme for protection of the rights of victims of crime and providing for victims compensation by the State under Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme, 1964. Under the Criminal Justice Act, 1972, the system of payment of compensation by the offender was introduced. It gave courts power to make an ancillary order of compensation in addition to the main penalty in cases were injury, loss, damage had resulted

The Continental Countries have recognised two types of rights for victims of crime as basic and indispensable. They are rights of victim(s) to participate in criminal proceedings, which include right to be impleaded, rights to know and to be heard and help the court to find out the truth. The other rights which every victim must avail is to seek and receive compensation for the harms or injuries suffered including right to appropriate interim reliefs during the court proceedings.

The French Criminal Justice System entitles all the parties who suffers injuries or damages as a result of crime, to be impleaded as parties' rights from the time of the investigation stage. They can move the court for appropriate action if they find that the investigation is unnecessarily delayed or distorted.

The participation of victim in the criminal proceeding is deemed necessary from the point of view of supplementing the evidence. It may also help in eliminating the possibility of unjustified withdrawl or closure of the case on extraneous or flimsy grounds as the victim may resist the same or in case the victim has died, his legal representatives may move to the court for the cause of justice to the deceased victim. Even the registered welfare organisations may get themselves impleaded in case of victims of rape or sexual or where the victim is child.

The modern American Criminal Justice System seeks to be more focused on safeguarding the rights and interest of the victims of crime by affording there every possible opportunity to ventilate their just cause before the trial court and seek relief. The victimology developed in USA during the past three decade have shown the understanding of victim-offender relationship and at the same time it also helps in crime investigations.

South Asian Society of Criminology and Victimology (SASCV)

More recently, an international association called the South Asian Society of Criminology and Victimology (SASCV) has been founded in February 2011, to nurture and promote criminological and victimological knowledge in South Asian countries such as Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Pakistan, Maldives, Sri Lanka and Nepal. The countries share their best practices in order to develop understanding of criminology and victimology as two important branches connected with criminal justice System.

It has been generally accepted that the South Asian countries are facing acute problems of corruption, criminal violence, terrorism, extremism white collar crime and cyber crime human rights violation, victimization etc. The SASCV seeks to initiate measures to assist member countries in framing criminal justice oriented legislative policies to support and cater the needs of victims of crime and of abuse of power.

The main objective of the South-Asian Society (SASCV) is as under:

  1. To serve as an international impartial, non-political and non-profit making association whose purpose is to promote criminology and victimology in South Asian region.
  2. To function in close collaboration with other national and international bodies to use the available resources for propagation of victimological knowledge.
  3. Scientific exchange of expert and organisation of international seminars, symposia, workshop, conferences etc, on the related subject.
  4. To encourage, promote and co-ordinate research development programmes and evaluation activities related to criminology and victimology in the South Asian region.
  5. To sensitise those who are responsible for criminal justice system regarding need to care, help and assistance to victim of crime through resort to restorative justice.
  6. To promote education and training of criminologist and victimologists and professionals working in this field, particularly, the officials entrusted with the administration of criminal justice.

Victims of Crime Act, 1996 (CANADA):

Canada has enacted victims of Crime Act with a view to providing access to justice to those who are victims of crime. The Act, inter alia provides:
  1. Victims of crime should be treated with courtesy; compassion and their dignity and privacy should be preserved.
  2. Victims should receive prompt financial redress for harm or injury they have suffered due to crime.
  3. Victims should be informed of and should have access to services including social, medical, legal and mental health and assistance.
  4. Victims of crime should be informed about the process of investigation and prosecution of the offence, court procedures, the role of the victims in the proceedings and disposition of the proceedings.
  5. Victims are entitled, where personal interest are affected, to have their views and concerns brought to the notice of the court.
  6. Victims and their families should be protected from intimidation, retaliation and harassment by the perpetrator of the offence or his men.
  7. Victims are entitled to inform about the offender's status, including release dates, parole eligibility, probation term, release on bail etc.
  8. Victims are entitled to prepare a Victims Impact Statement, which should be taken into consideration by the court while awarding sentence to the offenders.
  9. Victims should have their stolen property returned to them as soon as possible and if it could not be recovered by enforcement authorities, they should be entitled to equivalent money value of the same from the offender or from the State.
Thus, it would be seen that the Canadian law on Crime Victims is a comprehensive legislation covering almost all aspects of victim's problems.

Status Of Acid Attack Case In A Decade:

[2]The year 2014 saw a never-before 309 acid attack incidents being reported from across the country. This is almost 300 per cent more than the average number of such cases witnessed during the preceding three years.

The years 2011, 2012 and 2013 witnessed 83,85, and 66 cases being reported respectively, but this number shot up to 309, in 2014 - almost four times the average number of acid attack cases in the preceding years.

[3]The alarming statistics came to light following a meeting convened by the Ministry of Home Affairs on March 14, where representative from the Centre and state government adduced the data for a compilation, with the aid of the National Crime Records Bureau.

This meeting was held in accordance with an order by Social Justice Bench of the Supreme Court in the course of hearing PILs on acid attack cases. The Bench comprising Justice Madan B Lokur and Uday U Lalit, had directed the Centre of convene a meeting and file a comprehensive affidavit on the number of acid attack cases apart from the mechanism for treatment, compensation and rehabilitation of the victims.

The charts submitted by the government in its affidavits have describe the data for 2014 as provisional but its certain that the number of cases could only go up as the exact break-up cases in each state and UT is given.

Uttar Pradesh topped the list with 185 cases till November 2014, followed by Madhya Pradesh with 53 cases. Among the Seven Union Territories, the acid attack cases were reported only from Delhi, which witnessed 27 such case last year.

The number of persons arrested is only 208 as against 309 cases reported. While UP there were no arrest in at least 66 cases, in Delhi only 7 people were arrested in 27 cases. In the preceding three years 336 persons were arrested in total 234 cases.

India Today Data Intelligence Unit (DIU) has found that between 2014 AND 2018 there have been, 1483 victims of acid attack in the country. This is according to data released by National Crime Records Bureau.

The year 2017 witnessed the highest number of acid attack in these five years at 309, with 319 victims. But while 2017 was followed by 2018, unfortunately, the legal process shows a serious backlog for both years.

A total of 596 acid attack cases were reported in 2017 and 2018, with 623 victims falling prey, but data shows that only 149 people were charge- sheet in each year. This is almost or less than half the number of incidents in each year. The lowest number of cases (244) was reported in 2014, with 201 people charge sheeted whereas the year 2020 has witnessed 182 active acid attack cases.

View Of Hon. Supreme Court In Order To Stop Acid Attack:

[4]Supreme court of India took it very seriously. The three pleading that brought before the Court by the Laxmi was very clear and Court understood the need for specific law for acid attack. As our neighbouring countries Bangladesh has already framed the regulation relating to sale and purchase of acid to curb the acid attacks and has seen a decline in the acid attack encouraged the Supreme Court to frame the regulations.

Firstly in this regard on 06.02.2013 the Supreme Court directed Home Secretary, Minister of Home Affairs associating the Secretary, Ministry of Chemical and Fertilizers to convey meeting to discuss the following aspects
  • To enact any appropriate provision to regulate the sale of acid in that particular state or union territory.
  • To take any appropriate measure to rehabilitate the acid victims and even for their proper treatment.
  • And the compensation payable to the acid attack victims by state or creation of some separate fund for payment of compensation to the acid attack victims.

Initially various state Government and Union territories have filed their affidavits. And even Central Government assured to the Court that it will sit with all State Government and Union Territories as well frame the guidelines to regulate the sale of acid. But it utterly failed to do that so now that is left to the supreme court to frame the regulation relating to sale and purchase of Acid. Justice Lodha by criticizing the negligence of government said Seriousness is not seen on the part of Government in handling the issue. So the Honorable Supreme Court by keeping the constitutional provision of Articles 21,14,15 and 32 in mind issued the guidelines.

Under the new guidelines:
  • Acid could not be sold to any individuals below the age of 18
  • The buyer of the acid has to furnish a photo identity card before buying acid.
  • The buyer has to mention the purpose for which he is buying the acid.
  • The seller of the acid has to submit these documents to nearby police station within 3 days.
  • The seller has to give the information about the stocks of acid to the sub-divisional-magistrate within 15 days.
  • In case of undeclared stock of acid it will be opened to the concerned sub-divisional-magistrate to confiscate the stock and suitably impose fine up to rs.50,000/-
    The educational institutions, research laboratories, government departments and government department of public sector undertakings if they are required to keep the stock of the acid then they have to follow the following guidelines:
    1. A register has to be maintained regarding the usage of acid and the same shall be filed with the Sub-Divisional Magistrate.
    2. A person shall be made accountable for possession and safe keeping of acid in their premise.
    3. The acid shall be stored under the supervision of a person and their shall be compulsory checking on the students, and person leaving the laboratory.

Even there was a need of a law which deals with acid attack with stringent punishments for convicts and fair compensation to the victim. The pleading before the court was need to frame a new law which deals with acid attacks or amend Indian Penal Code, Indian Evidence Act, and Criminal Procedure Code to include the Acid Attack as an offence.

Accordingly, the Indian Penal Code and Criminal Procedure were amended by Criminal Amendment Act of 2013 to make Acid Attack as an offence with stringent punishment for convict and fair compensation for victim. As a result, section 326A and 326B of Indian Penal Code were inserted which deals with acid attack and imposes punishment of imprisonment for 10 years which may extend for life and fine which must be reasonable to meet the medical expenses of the victim.

Victims of acid attack have to undergo series of surgeries and it's a great difficulty for them to come back to their early life so by keeping these things in mind the supreme court fixed the standard and directed to the all-State Government and Union territories that the acid victims shall be paid compensation of at least 3 lakh rupees.

Now the victims of acid attack can remedy under section 357 A and 357 B of CrPC. A meeting was conveyed by the Secretary in the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India and the Secretary in the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India with all the Chief Secretaries and their counter parts in the State/ Union territories on 14.03.2015. In this meeting the Supreme Court of India directed to all the States and Union Territories to give it the wide and adequate publicity in that particular state/ union territory so that victim can take the benefit of victim compensation scheme.

The Supreme Court also directed the following things:
  • The states and UT have to take guidelines of the Supreme Court in a serious manner in compensating the acid attack victims and they have to implement the directions given by the Supreme Court through the issue of requisite/notification.
  • The private hospitals will also be brought on board for compliance and the States/Union territories will use necessary means in this regard.
  • No hospital/clinic should refuse treatment citing lack of specialized facilities.
  • First Aid must be administered to the victim and after stabilization, the victim could be shifted to specialized facilities for further treatment, wherever required.
  • Action may be taken against hospital/clinic for refusal to treat victims of acid attacks and other crimes in contravention of the provisions of Section 357 of the Crpc,1973.
  • And it also directed to the hospital where the victims of acid attack are treated to provide certificate to the victim, and this may be utilized by the victim for treatment and reconstructive surgeries or any other scheme that victim may be entitled to with State Government or Union Territories, as case maybe.

Role Of Judiciary On The Rights Of Victims:

[5]A significant phase in the evolution of victimology in India was witnessed in the 1980s, through the creative judicial decisions delivered by the application courts. In 1980's and 1990's, the Supreme Court has recognized the special rights of the victim to compensation for harm suffered either at the hands of a private criminal or in the course of criminal justice administration.

A new era in the Indian Victimology began with initiative taken by the Indian Judiciary in the nature of evolving a new kind of compensatory constitutional remedy through articles 32 or 226/227.

In Rudal Shah v. State of Bihar,[6] where a person was wrongfully kept in prison for 14years. The petitioner inter alia also sought compensation for illegal incarceration. The Supreme Court for the first time held that its power under Article 32 of the Constitution of India extends to award compensation for the deprivation of fundamental rights. The court observed:
Article21 which guarantees the right to life and liberty will be denuded of its significant content if the power of this court were limited to passing orders of release from illegal detention. One of the telling ways in which the violation of that rights can reasonably be prevented and due compliance with the mandate of Article 21 could be secured is to mulct its violation in the payment of monetary compensation.

In Nilabati Behera v. State of Bihar,[7] is an illustrative of the new trend of using constitutional jurisdiction to do justice to the victims of crime. The Court held that a claim in public law for compensation for violation of human rights and abuse of power is an acknowledged remedy for the enforcement and protection of such rights. The court further laid down that the concept of sovereign immunity is not applicable to the case of violation of right to life and personal liberty guaranteed by Article 21 of the Constitution.

In D.K Basu v. State of West Bengal,[8] the Supreme Court held that monetary compensation for redressal by the court is useful. It is perhaps the only effective remedy to 'apply balm to the wounds' of the family members of the deceased victim, who may have been the breadwinner of the family.

In People's Union v. Uttrakhand Jan Morcha,[9] the Supreme Court awarded a sum of Rs. One Lakh to the families of each of the deceased killed in a 'fake encounter' by the police.

Affirmative Action By The Higher Judiciary:

  1. Restitution to Victims:

    Despite the absence of any special legislation to render justice to victims in India, the Supreme Court has taken a proactive role and resorted to affirmation action to protect the rights of victims of crime and abuse of power. The court has adopted the concept of restorative justice and awarded compensation or restitution or enhanced the amount of compensation to victims, beginning from the 1980s.

    Case Laws: Sukhdev Singh v. State of Punjab[10], Balraj v. State of U.P[11].
  2. Justice for Rape Victims-Guidelines for Victim Assistance:

    In Bodhisattwa Gautam v. Subhra Chakraborty[12], the Supreme Court held that if the court trying an offence of rape has jurisdiction to award compensation at the final stage, the court also has the right to award interim compensation. The court, having satisfied the prima facie culpability of the accused, ordered him to pay a sum of Rs.1000 every month to the victim as interim compensation along with the arrears of compensation from the date of the complaint.

    It is a landmark case in which the Supreme Court issued a set of guidelines to help indigenous rape victim who cannot afford legal, medical and psychological services, in accordance with the Principles of UN Declaration of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power, 1985:
    1. The complaint of sexual assault case should be provided with a victim's Advocate who is well acquainted with the CJS to explain to the victims the proceedings, and to assist her in the police station and in Court and guide her as to how to avail of psychological counselling or medical assistance from other agencies.
    2. Legal assistance as the police station while she is being questioned;
    3. The police should be under a duty to inform the victim of her rights to representation before any question are asked of her and the police report should state that the victims was so informed.
    4. A list of Advocates willing to act in these case should be kept at the police station for victims who need a lawyers.
    5. The advocate shall be appointed by the court, in order to ensure that victims are questioned without undue delay;
    6. In all rape trials, anonymity of the victims must be maintained;
    7. It is necessary, having regard to the Directive Principles contained under Article 38(1) of the Constitution of India, to set up a Criminal Injuries Compensation Board frequently incur substantial financial loss. Some, for example, are too traumatized to continue in employment.
  3. State Compensation for Victims of Abuse of Power:

    As early as 1983, the Supreme Court recognized the need for state compensation in cases of abuse of power by the State Machinery. In the landmark case of Rudul Shah v. State of Bihar[13], the Supreme Court ordered the Government of Bihar to pay Rudul Shah further sum of Rs. 30,000/- as compensation, which according to the court was a palliative nature, in addition to a sum of Rs. 5,000/- in case of illegal incarceration of the victim for long year. Similarly in Saheli, a Women's Resources Centre through Mrs. Nalini Bhanot v. Commissioner of Police, Delhi Police[14], the court awarded a sum of Rs.75,000/- state compensation to the victim's mother, holding that the victim died due to beating by the police.
  4. Recent Laws to Care for and Protect Special Categories of Victim:

    There are also significant developments in the form of new laws to promote the cause of victims and to mitigate the suffering of potential victims of vulnerable sections of the population such as women, children and elders. The recent enactments by the Parliament have a significant bearing on preventing victimization and giving relief to victims.

Conclusion And Suggestion:
Nowhere in the constitution, fundamental rights to have compensation is not presented but the court recognised is an implied right under Article 21 and 357A of Criminal Procedure Code in several catena of judgments and this kind of judicial activism on sensitive issues reflects how Indian Judiciary acts as a protector of will and wish of every citizen in India. But seriousness in such issues was not caught the attention of the government and police officials.

Since no more uniform basis has been formulated for the grants of compensation awarded have fluctuated from a few thousand rupees in some cases to lakhs of rupees in others. This uncertainty does not help matters. Amending the rights to life may be useful to universalize the rights to seek compensation, but the need of the hour is to enact legislation to set out the parameters on which compensation should be granted.

Public participation through campaigning is most important aspects in implementing any legislation which prevents the acid violence to get rid of it because a formal legislation can give compensation to the victims and convict the offenders but aftermath effects like isolating the women from society and made them confined to four walls of their houses, so to prevent such isolating from the larger part of society because we are living in a patriarchal society where rooted with thoughts of women discrimination and society should accept without any hesitation.

In the process of prevention of victimization and protection of victims, there are many challenges faced in India which are being tackled through some positive measures.
Some of the challenges and the counter measures include:
  1. No Separate law for crime victim yet:
    But continuous efforts are going on to enacts a national law for victims.
  2. Corruption in the Indian Criminal Justice System:
    Corruption by public officials erodes the entire health of the society and victimizes the people in all sections of the population. Many steps to reduce the level of corruption and accumulation of illegal wealth have been taken by the government. Declaration of assets and wealth by judges have been taken by ministers of the government is a recently introduced example.
  3. Empowerment of Women to Prevent Victimization of Women:
    Serious efforts to change the traditional submissive and victimized role of women have been taken up NGOs and the Government. One attempt is the consistent struggle and active efforts by women's organisation to get more political power for women in the form of representation in the Parliament, state legislature and local bodies through a 33% reservation of seats for women in these bodies.
  4. Empowerment of Children:
    Making primary education a fundamental right under the Constitution is a leaping step to empower children as education is the tool for development. The implementation of this rights will have a bearing on other kinds of victimization such as child labour. Strengthening the Noon Meal scheme in the schools in the schools for the children in Tamil Nadu and the introducing of this scheme in other states will attract more children from the disadvantaged sections of the society to schools to pursue study.
  5. Major Challenge is Implementation:
    Transparency and honesty among the politicians who make policies and the commitment of government officials who are charged with the responsibility for implementation are the big challenges. Whereas the situation of victims has not been satisfactory in India, developed countries, including the United Kingdom, have gone far ahead to render victim justice, but the expectations and aspirations of victims remain high even in those countries which do not match the accomplishments made elsewhere.

In the Modern time, the Criminal justice system should recognise the rights of the victims of crime. There is no doubt of the fact that our legal system also recognizing the victim rights and adopting the concept of the restorative justice. Now, there is a lot needs to be run all this concept at the micro level. For this, we have to take immediate and possible measures to help the victims of the crime.

We can take following steps:
  1. Special Training to Police officials and Hospitals Staffs:
    The special Training must be given to police officials and doctors. Our past experiences show that victims of crimes are usually harassed by the police officials at the time registering the case and doctors at the time of medical examination. They are first hand people who directly deal with the victim of crime. They should give fair, considerate and sympathetic treatment to the victims.
  2. Protection to the Victims:
    It is very painful to mention here that even today; there is no specific provisions in whole Indian Criminal Justice System regarding providing protection to the Victims of crime. This lacuna affects the trial also.
  3. Simple and Speedy Mechanism for providing Compensation:
    The courts have the power to grant compensation to victim of crime. But the process is lengthy and time consuming. Therefore, the process should be simple and speedy and accessible to all victims.
  4. Compensation as a matter of right:
    The compensation should be a matter of right of the victim. The goal of victim compensation and restitution is to acknowledge and validate the losses of victims through a system of compensation by the State or by the offenders.
  5. Victim Participation in the Criminal Justice Process:
    All victims should have access to the justice system in order to represent their interest more effectively, it is important to ensure that they actively participating in the criminal proceedings. Whether it is trial, examination of witness, conviction or acquittal of the accused, the victim must have the access. The focus should be in ensuring that all victims have access to the Justice System as well as support through the Justice Process.
  6. Spread Legal Awareness:
    We should spread awareness among peoples about their rights so that they can approach to justice system immediately on the violation of their rights.

  1. Available in book of Victimology And Penalogy By Paranjapee
  2. Available in Indian Express Article -
  3. Available in - National Crime Record Bureau
  4. Available in - Journal On Contemporary Issue Of Law (Jcil) Volume 5 Issue3
  5. Available in - Journal On Contemporary Issue Of Law (Jcil) Volume 5 Issue3
  6. Citation - AIR 1983 SC 1086
  7. Citation - AIR (1993)2 SCC 746
  8. Citation - AIR (1997) I S.C.C, 416.
  9. Citation - AIR 1997 SC 1203.
  10. Citation - 1982 SSC (Cr)467
  11. Citation - 994 SSC(Cr)823
  12. Citation - AIR 1996 SC 922
  13. Citation - AIR 1983 SC 1086
  14. Citation - AIR 1990 SC 513

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Artificial intelligence (AI) is revolutionizing various sectors of the economy, and the legal i...

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