Thu, 21 Oct 2021

New Delhi [India], September 28 (ANI): Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) on Tuesday told the Supreme Court there is no specific policy in place for the rehabilitation of rape and incest survivors in the national capital, but the Commission, on its own takes up rehabilitation of certain survivors who are in dire need for it.

A Bench of justices AM Khanwilkar, Dinesh Maheshwari and CT Ravikumar, was informed by the DCW that it will ensure holistic rehabilitation and legal support to a 19-year-old woman who was allegedly sexually assaulted by her father when she was a minor.

The DCW said rehabilitation provided by them to such survivors includes providing financial help, access to education, skill development and facilitating job opportunities.

The top court today said that the first issue is of providing immediate comfort and security to the woman.

Noting that the DCW is willing to provide help to the woman, the apex court then asked the counsel appearing for the petitioner to interact with the officials of the DCW in this regard and tell all things so that they can take appropriate steps.

The Bench was told by the petitioner's counsel that the accused father has not been apprehended yet and he is sending threatening messages and calls to the woman.

The Bench asked them to meet the DCW officials and said it would hear the matter on Wednesday.

The top court was hearing the plea of the woman seeking direction to transfer the case registered on her complaint from Ambala to Delhi. The petition, drawn by advocate Akshita Goyal, has claimed that her father had sexually assaulted her when she was a minor. It said that as her mother had passed away in 2016, there is no one to look after her in the family.

She also sought direction to the DCW to look after the protection and basic necessities of her as she fears for her safety.

On September 24, the top court had asked the DCW to inform it about steps it would take to provide relief to the woman. It had also asked the Delhi Police to apprise it whether it has any objection in taking over the investigation in the case.

Filing its affidavit, the DCW said the woman had approached it on July 23 with a complaint of alleged sexual assault by her father which took place when she was a minor and a senior member of the commission interacted with her and held detailed counselling.

It has contacted the woman for a detailed interaction so that a plan can be chalked out for her rehabilitation as per her aspirations. The DCW further stated that based on the interest of the woman, the commission can facilitate to place her in a shelter home and arrange for her further education and enrol her in probable skill development courses so that she can become self-independent and lead a normal life.

As per the petition, the woman had left her home on July 22 and went to one of her relative's house and the next day, she had approached the DCW.

The plea said the woman had "escaped the clutches of her father" and mustered the courage to inform about her ordeal and sexual exploitation to the DCW and Delhi Police in July this year.

In the case, a zero FIR was lodged at Delhi in July and was subsequently transferred to Ambala. A zero FIR can be filed in any police station and it is then forwarded to the concerned police station under whose jurisdiction the alleged offence has been committed for necessary action. (ANI)

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