- June 25, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
- The Calcutta High Court has described the inability of the State Legal Services Authority (SLSA) and the West Bengal government to pay victim compensation as a sorry state of affairs which cannot be permitted to continue for an indefinite period of time.
Inability to pay victim compensation
- Inadequate funds- SLSA has not been provided with the funds for disbursement towards victim compensation.
- The court pointed out that those victims who have suffered loss or injury or any kind of physical or mental agony have been brought within the purview of The Code of Criminal Procedure for a stated purpose.
- The Code of Criminal Procedure as well as the notification published by the State in 2017 make it mandatory on the State government not only to make a separate budget for victim compensation, but also to constitute a fund with the specific nomenclature “Victim Compensation Fund” for those who need rehabilitation, the order noted.
- Activists and survivors have welcomed the Calcutta High Court order. There are a number of survivors of trafficking in the State who have been awarded victim compensations, but the money has not yet been handed over to them since the SLSA does not have sufficient funds for that.
State Legal Service Authority
- It is headed by the Chief Justice of the State High Court who is its Patron-in-Chief.
- A serving or retired Judge of the High Court is nominated as its Executive Chairman.
Legal Services Institutions for providing Free Legal Aid:
- National Level : National Legal Services Authority
- State Level : State Legal Services Authority.
- District Level : District Legal Services Authority. The District Judge of the District is its ex-officio Chairman.
- Taluka/ Sub-Division Level : Taluka/ Sub-Divisional Legal Services Committee headed by a senior Civil Judge.
- Supreme Court: Supreme Court Legal Services Committee
- High Court : High Court Legal Services Committee
National Legal Services Authority:
- The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) was constituted under the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 in 1995 for providing free and competent legal services to the weaker sections of the society.
- The Chief Justice of India is the Patron-in-Chief and the second senior most Judge of Supreme Court of India is the Executive Chairman of the Authority.
- Article 39 A of the Constitution provides for free legal aid to the poor and weaker sections of the society, to promote justice on the basis of equal opportunity.