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The law with regard to Section 228A includes both print and electronic media: SC

Ms. X vs. The State of Jharkhand & Ors.

Writ Petition (Civil) No. 1352 of 2019

10 January 2021

The three judges’ bench of the Supreme Court consisting of Justice Ashok Bhushan, Justice R. Subhash Reddy, and Justice M.R. Shah disposed of the writ petition by issuing the following directions (i) that the minor children of the petitioner get free education in any Government Institutions (ii) House should be provided to the petitioner under any of the government scheme (iii) Police Security Should be provided to the petitioner (iv) should provide legal services to the petitioner to safeguard her interest.

This writ petition was filed under article 32 of the constitution. The petitioner claims to be a Scheduled Tribe in the State of Jharkhand and was born on 24.12.1984. On 08.06.2002 petitioner went to Dultonganj, and she was raped by one Mohd. Ali and three other accused. Charges framed against him were under section 376/34 read with section 3(xi) of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989 and he was convicted on 15.02.2014 with 10 years RI.

In 2005 and 2006, the petitioner filed an FIR against the DY. Inspector-General of Police and Inspector General of Police under section 376,376(2)(a) IPC and Section 3(1)(xii) of the Scheduled Caste and Schedule Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. Subsequently, in an order dated 23.12.2017, Session Judge acquitted the Inspector General of Police against which criminal appeal has been filed in the High Court of Jharkhand. In total, 7 criminal cases were initiated by the petitioner. A Criminal case was also lodged against the petitioner.

It was contended on behalf of the petitioner that the media disclosed the identity of the petitioner, and the petitioner being the rape victim, was facing certain issues: (i) no one is ready to give her accommodation even on rent (ii) has no means of survival and unable to give education to her children.

On the other hand, the learned standing counsel from the State of Jharkhand, Mr. Tapesh Kumar Singh, Contended that the petitioner has lodged various FIRs alleging rape against several people and also contend that an FIR was also lodged against the petitioner for the commission of an offense under section 25(1-b) an of Arms Act. Recently the petitioner filed a complaint under section 376 IPC against Subodh Thakur after vacating his accommodation. Therefore, it can be assumed that the petitioner is in the habit of making false allegations against several persons and officers.

To reach a conclusion, the court referred to relevant provisions Indian Penal Code and applied the principles used in the case of Nipun Saxena and another vs. Union of India and Others, (2010) 2 SCC 703, Padma @ Shushma Badaik vs. The State of Jharkhand and Ors., and stated that:

“A victim of rape will face hostile discrimination and social ostracisation in society. Such victim will find it difficult to get a job, will find it difficult to get married and will also find it difficult to get integrated in society like a normal human being. ………” (Para 17)

“Counsel for the State has submitted that State is ready to provide free education to the children of the writ petitioner. If she will give her consent, her children shall be admitted in the Govt. Boarding School at Gumla and the expenses shall be borne by the Government.” (Para 18)

“No person can print or publish in print, electronic, social media, etc. the name of the victim or even in a remote manner disclose any facts which can lead to the victim being identified and which should make her identity known to the public at large.” (Para 22)

On 06.03.2017, a compensation of amount RS. 1,00,000/- has been granted to the petitioner as a rape victim by the District Legal Service Authority, Ranchi, under the Jharkhand Victim Compensation Scheme, 2012 (amended in 2016) governed through the section 357A of the code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

To Conclude and to solve the grievances of the petitioner, the court issued the following directions:

1. The Deputy Commissioner, Ranchi is directed to take measure to ensure that minor children of the petitioner are provided free education in any of the Government Institutions in District Ranchi where the petitioner is residing till they attain the age of 14 years.

2. The Deputy Commissioner, Ranchi may also consider the case of the petitioner for providing house under Prime Minister Awas Yojna or any other Central or State Scheme in which petitioner could be provided accommodation.

3. The Senior Superintendent of Police, Ranchi and other competent authority shall review the Police security provided to the petitioner from time to time and take such measures as deem fit and proper.

4. The District Legal Services Authority, Ranchi on representation made by the petitioner shall render legal services to the petitioner as may be deemed fit to safeguard the interest of the petitioner. (Para 27)

Subsequently, the Court disposed of the writ petition.

Swadheen Singh



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