The Supreme Court on Friday said states were obliged to compensate the victims of cow vigilante groups and asked them to file a report on the compliance of its order by appointing a nodal officer to prevent violence by such vigilante groups.

“Victims are to be compensated. It is obligatory on the part of the state to compensate the victim of crime,” said a bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud.

Under the Code of Criminal Procedure, the state is under obligation to have a scheme for victim compensation and if they don’t, they should have one, the bench added.

The court’s observation that it was incumbent upon the state to pay compensation to the victim of crime came during a hearing on a batch of petitions, including by Tushar Gandhi seeking its intervention on curbing violence by cow vigilante groups.

Without passing any order, the apex court said all related issues can be raised during the next hearing of the matter on 31 October. The court said if the petitioners wanted, they can file a separate petition on the issue of compensation.

In the last hearing of the matter on 6 September, the top court had said cow vigilantism has to stop and directed states/union territories to appoint district nodal officers to take steps to prevent and act against perpetrators of such violence.