NEW DELHI: The Cabinet meeting chaired by PM Narendra Modi on Wednesday approved a proposal to enhance compensation to civilian victims of terrorist and communal violence, left-wing extremism and cross-border firing from Rs 3 lakh to Rs 5 lakh.
For the first time under the initiative titled Central Scheme for Assistance to Civilian Victims, civilian victims of cross-border firing along the India-Pakistan border will be given compensation of Rs 5 lakh, similar to those who perish in terrorist or Maoist violence.
“From now onwards, any civilian who dies anywhere in the country due to terror attacks, left-wing extremism, firing from across the border, shelling or IED explosion will be given Rs 5 lakh as compensation uniformly. The amount will be given to the next of the kin of the victim,” said a government statement.
Besides, Rs 5 lakh will also be given to those who sustain 50 per cent or more disability or incapacitation due to the same reasons. The compensation amount will be given subject to the condition that no employment has been provided to any of the family members of the victims by the state or Central government. So far, the next of the kin of people killed or civilians who suffer permanent incapacitation as a result of such violence have been paid only Rs 3 lakh. Now, with the Cabinet nod, families of the victims will be eligible to get assistance under the scheme even if they have received any other assistance by way of ex gratia or any other type of relief from the government or any other source, except when a similar scheme is already being implemented by the government.
So far, the government has disbursed Rs 35.89 crore as compensation to civilian victims since 2008. During Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Jammu and Kashmir in 2014, the issue of financial assistance to the people killed in cross-border firing was raised. For the first time in 70 years since Independence, acknowledging the problem of the population residing in border areas, the government analysed their plight since they suffer due to frequent ceasefire violations, specifically on the Jammu & Kashmir's northwestern border with Pakistan.
Approximately 770 km of the Line of Contorl and about 220 km of the international border have been witness to frequent ceasefire violations since 1990.