RM139,000 (S$5440) for maid who was abused

RM139,000 (S$5440) for maid who was abused
Nirmala Bonat being kissed by her mother Martha Toni.

KUALA LUMPUR - Former maid Nirmala Bonat has been awarded RM139,197.20 (S$5440) in damages after a High Court here allowed her civil claims against her former employers for abusing her 10 years ago.

Nirmala, 29, won the civil suit when Judicial Commissioner Siti Khadijah S. Hassan Badjenid ruled that the plaintiff had proven her case against defendants Yim Pek Ha, 46, and her husband Hii Ik Tiing, 48.

The court granted the amount which included RM10,000 in cost. It also allowed a 5 per cent interest on the balance.

In her 48-page decision, JC Siti Khadijah said any human being could imagine the pain when a hot iron is placed on one's breasts and back.

"Hot water was also poured on her back.

"Nirmala suffered pain every time she put on her bra and clothes or when she showered.

"She did not receive any medical treatment except for the Panadol she took," the judge said yesterday.

JC Siti Khadijah said when Nirmala was rescued, she had to show her breasts for evidence including to the photographer, the court and such.

"Not only did she suffer pain, but she also had to face humiliation," she added.

The court allowed Nirmala's claim on general damages which included for injuries on her breasts, back, arm, head, face, mouth, nose and emotional stress.

The court also allowed special damages on basic expenses for accommodation, food and drinks and loss of income.

However, the court disallowed her claim on expenses for medical report, special medical treatment, loss of ability to find income and travel allowance after finding the claims unsubstantiated.

Nirmala, 29, from Desa Tuapakas in Indonesia, filed the suit against former boutique manager Yim and Hii on Jan 28, 2010.

She was absent from yesterday's proceeding.

In her suit, Nirmala claimed to have suffered pain, humiliation and physical and mental anguish while working for Yim and Hii as their domestic helper at the couple's home at Villa Putera in Jalan Tun Ismail between September 2003 and May 17, 2004.

Prior to the civil suit, Yim was found guilty in 2008 of three counts of inflicting injuries on Nirmala.

She is currently serving a 12-year jail term at the Kajang Women's Prison.

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