“Lawyer Helps Child Sexual Abuse Victims Win Compensation Up to Rs 1 Crore”

An Article written by Aruna Raghuram for thebetterindia.

Prita Jha, the founder-president of the NGO Peace and Equality Cell (PEC), has been working tirelessly for the past 11 years to prevent child sexual abuse (CSA) and provide support to victims. Prita is an engineer turned lawyer who converted her degree to a legal one after being fascinated by a course on ‘law for engineers’ while studying in the UK. She returned to India in 2005 and started working with riot victims on cases of gender-based violence. In 2012, she established PEC to continue her fight for justice.

PEC’s work is mainly focused on two areas: preventing CSA by creating awareness and providing victims access to justice. Prita provides free legal representation to the victims, helps them access counselling, and makes efforts to rehabilitate them. Regardless of the outcome (conviction or acquittal), in all cases, survivors are supported by PEC so that they do not have to navigate the criminal justice system alone.

PEC has offered legal support to CSA victims in 320 cases so far, of which 194 were not fought till the end. Of the remaining 124, 76 have concluded, while the rest are still in the courts. Through their persistent advocacy with the concerned departments, PEC has been able to procure a compensation of over Rs 1 crore so far for victims of CSA in 44 cases. Since 2020, the minimum compensation for a victim is Rs 4 lakh in penetrative sexual assault cases.

PEC works widely in rural areas and among poor, marginalized communities. Apart from CSA, it works in the areas of domestic violence and other forms of gender-based violence. The NGO conducts workshops with children, parents, and teachers in rural areas as well as in urban communities. People are made aware of CSA and how to access justice in case it happens within their families or communities.

As a fairly small organisation, we strive to fight for the rights of the unheard and the misunderstood. Laws that are in place to protect women and children need to be fought for and protected. Ensuring the implementation of these rights is important.

Your financial contribution will help us continue to provide our vital work to women and children. You can contribute ₹10,000 to help us access justice in a case of child sexual abuse or gender based violence. Your money will be used to hire a advocate to fight the case in court.

You can contribute ₹10,000 to our training budget to ensure that we can deliver 2-day trainings in rural areas and for poor sections of society.

You can contribute ₹5000 to our adhoc victim fund to help us pay for travel and other necessary expenses in cases of the poorest survivors. This is not something we do routinely but there are some cases where survivors do not have the money to travel to court for hearings or to go to the counselling office or to go to different government departments to claim compensation.

You can contribute ₹2000 to help us provide field level support to survivors in one case.
Donations made will be 100% tax exempt. Funds are only accepted in Indian currency.

Bank details for transfer are :

Name: Peace and Equality Cell

A/C No: 3751000100264056


Bank Name & Branch: Punjab National Bank, Relief Road Ahmedabad – 380001

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