Cuttack, August 20 (Odisha.in) Orissa High Court Monday directed Orissa government to pay a compensation of Rs. Eight lakh to a youth who languished in a jail for over eight years with out his fault.
The division bench of Orissa High Court comprising Chief Justice A.K. Ganguly and Justice Indrajit Mohanty ordered that the state government should deposit the compensation amount with the Court’s Registrar (Judicial) on or before September 17.
Pratap Naik, a resident of Ghimuhani village under Puruna Katak police station in Boudh district, was arrested on murder charges when he was just 14 years old.
A Sessions Court in Phulbani had convicted in the case in 1989. The youth moved the high court which acquitted him in October 1994.
Although he was acquitted the jail authority kept him imprisoned saying that the court order did not reach them.
Prabir Kumar Das, a social activist and lawyer had filed a public interest petition in the high court after media highlighted the plight of the youth.
Das had sought a court direction to the state government to pay adequate compensation to victim for this illegal detention and human right violation.
Initially, when Das moved the High Court seeking justice for Naik his petition was rejected. The Court, however, considered the mater when he filed a fresh petition following a Supreme Court direction on the issue.
The Division Bench ordered the state government to pay the compensation and said that the amount be deposited in Naik’s name in a nationalised bank in the form of a fixed deposit for a period of 10 years.
The judgement said, Naik would be allowed to withdraw 75 percent of the interest earned on the amount for his personal expenses on a monthly basis. At the end of the 10 years period, he would be at liberty to withdraw the full amount.
Talking to Odisha.in the human right activist advocate Prabir Das said that he was happy that he was able to get some relief for poor Pratap Naik, who had suffered in the jail even after the Court’s order for his release.
He hoped that this judgment will work as an eye-opener for the people working in the judiciary service and they would act more carefully.