NEW DELHI: A day after Supreme Court directed the Gujarat government to pay a compensation of Rs 50 lakh, a job and accommodation to Bilkis Bano, a 2002 gang-rape victim, she said that she plans to use a portion of the compensation money to create a fund victims of rape and communal violence.
She added that she will name the fund after Saleha, her three-year-old daughter who was killed by the mob of Hindu rioters that gangraped her, according to Indian Express.
“I want to give the money I have received from the Supreme Court to help in the battles of other sisters like me who have been victims and for the education of their children,” Bano said while speaking at a press conference in Delhi on Wednesday adding “We never got back Saleha’s body, we couldn’t even bury her and perform her final rites, and for that I am filled with sorrow till this day,” said Bano. “Perhaps this judgment will help bring some kind of peace.”
In March 2002, Bano, then 21, was five months pregnant when attacked, gang-raped and left to die alongside 14 members of her family, including her three-year-old daughter, during the Gujarat riots.
She also said that her 16-year-old daughter Hazra wants to be a lawyer to fight such cases (of assault victims). “She (Hazra) had decided a few years back that she wants to be a lawyer. I want her to be educated and become a lawyer, so that she can help other women at the Supreme Court,” she said.
After living a nomadic life for 17 years she can now lead a stable life. “I can settle at one place and move on in life. My children will be spared constant relocation.”