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State Governments put Nirbhaya Fund on hold, HC asks for PIL

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Nirbhaya Fund was created after the 2012 Nirbhaya gang rape incident.

Nirbhaya Fund was created after the 2012 Nirbhaya gang rape incident.

HC: According to the petition, only 15 percent of the fund was spent according to the available data from 18 states. Until 2019, Maharashtra did not spend a single penny, Tripura and Kerala spent only 3 percent from their Nirbhaya Fund, Manipur spent 4 percent, Gujarat, West Bengal and Delhi spent 5–5 percent.

Prayagraj The Allahabad High Court has sought a reply from the state government in 4 weeks on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed on the complaint of not using the Nirbhaya Fund, created for the assistance of violence-affected women and girls. The High Court has directed the petition to be presented for hearing on 2 February. The petition has demanded details of expenditure along with the Nirbhaya fund amount and steps taken for the safety of women. This order has been given by the bench of Chief Justice Govind Mathur and Justice S Shamsheri on the PIL of advocate Mamta Singh.

The petitioner says that after the Nirbhaya incident in Delhi in 2013, the central government had sanctioned an amount of Rs 1000 crore. This amount was to be spent in the empowerment and protection of women and girls, for which the Central Government has issued detailed guidelines. The amount of crores collected by making Nirbhaya fund was allocated to the state governments, but the state government put this fund in cold storage.

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Not a single penny spent in Maharashtra till 2019, Delhi too laggard

The petitioner says that so far only 11 percent (252 crore) of the entire amount has been spent. According to available data from 18 states, only 15 percent of the fund was spent. Not a single penny was spent in Maharashtra until 2019. Tripura and Kerala spent only 3 percent from their Nirbhaya Fund, Manipur spent 4 percent, Gujarat, West Bengal and Delhi spent 5–5 percent and Telangana, Karnataka and Orissa spent only 6 percent from their Nirbhaya funds.Record increase in violence against women and girls

On the other hand, there has been a record increase in violence against women and girls. In 2015, 3,29,243 incidents of violence against women were reported while in 2016 it increased to 3,38,954. In 2017, this figure touched 3,59,849. The figures of violence against girls are also shocking. In 2015, 2016, 2017, it stood at 94,172, 106958 and 129032 respectively. All these figures are available on the Government’s National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).

The petitioner also says that in 2017 there were 32559 reported incidents of rape in the country, of which the incidence of rape from minor girls was 17,382 (53 percent). In Uttar Pradesh, out of 8721 kidnapping incidents, 80.67 percent of the abducted girls have been. The petition has sought to issue a command to control crime and to use the funds meant for treatment, rehabilitation etc. of crime victims.



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