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Give Rs 2 lakh more as ex-gratia for death of schoolgirl who fell into midday meal's dal vessel: NHRC to Odisha

ANI | Updated: Oct 04, 2020 20:47 IST


New Delhi [India], October 4 (ANI): The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has directed the Chief Secretary of Odisha to pay Rupees three lakh to the family members of the minor girl who died by falling into Hot dal vessel meant for Mid-day-Meal in Koraput district in the year 2014.
The Commission recommended an additional compensation of Rs two lakh which is to be paid to the family members of the deceased over and above ex-gratia payment of one lakh rupees sanctioned by the State.
Acting on a petition filed by Supreme Court lawyer and rights activist, Radhakanta Tripathy, the apex human rights watchdog passed this direction and sought compliance report along with proof of payment by October 15.
On 21 November, 2014, a Class IX student, who had fallen into a hot vessel of dal, succumbed to her burn injuries. The deceased has been identified as Basanti Barik, a student at Baligaon Girls' High School in Boipariguda block of Koraput district.
Basanti had fallen unconscious and fell into a large container of hot dal while waiting in the queue for the midday meal. She was asked to serve the dal during which it fell on her scalding her.

Tripathy alleged that it was the failure of the Education Department in ensuring basic human rights while serving midday meals that resulted in death and it amounts to severe human rights violations.
Seeking corrective measures against these mishaps, he requested the NHRC to investigate the case and direct the government officials to pay exemplary compensation to the family members of the deceased, Tripathy said.
Pursuant to the direction of the NHRC, the State informed that the amount of Rs.1 lakh as ex-gratia payment has been paid to the family members of the deceased child.
Considering the facts and circumstances of the case, the NHRC observed that the amount paid as ex-gratia is not sufficient and therefore, the Commission issued a show-cause notice to the Chief Secretary, Odisha government, as to why no show cause notice be issued as to why an additional compensation of rupees two lakhs should not be recommended to be paid to the family memvers of the deceased child, Basanti Barik for violation of her human rights.
The Chief Secretary, Government of Odisha, was directed to the file reply to show cause notice along with proof of payment in respect of 1 lakh rupees, already sanctioned as ex-gratia amount to the family members of the deceased child.
The NHRC observed that despite giving issuance of reminder to the show cause notice, the State authorities have neither submitted proof of ex-gratia payment nor any reply to the show cause notice.
Therefore, the Commission confirms its recommendation of additional compensation of two lakh rupees which is to be paid to the family members of the deceased over and above ex-gratia payment of one lakh rupees. (ANI)

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