Posts tagged ‘Human rights’

Human Rights

The Protection of Human Rights Act 1993 was amended in the year 2006 with an objective for better protection of human rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. Human rights are rights relating to life, liberty, equality and dignity of the individual guaranteed by the constitution or embodied in the International Covenants and enforceable by Courts in India. These are more basic than the fundamental rights and are available even to foreigners in India.
The Act provides for the constitution of a National Human Rights Commission at the centre. The National Commission shall consist of a chairperson and 4 members. A secretary general will act as the CEO of the National Commission. The head quarter of the National Commission is at Delhi.
At the state level, the act also provides for the constitution of a State Human Rights Commission. The same consists of a
chairperson and 2 members. A secretary shall act as the CEO of state commission. In Karnataka the state commission is at Bangalore.
The act also provides for the setting up of human rights courts by the state governments for providing speedy trial of offences relating to violation of human rights. These human rights courts are provided with special public prosecutors for the purpose of conducting cases in the human rights matters.

The functions of the Human Rights Commission are as follows:
a. Inquire, suo motu or on a petition presented to it by a victim or any person on his behalf ( or on a direction or order  of any Court) into complaint of
i. Violation of human rights or abetment thereof; or
ii. Negligence in the prevention of such violation by  a public  servant;
b.Intervene in any proceedings involving any allegations of violation of human rights pending before a court with the approval of  such court.
c.Visit, notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, any jail or other institution,  under the control of the state Government, where persons are detained or lodged for purposes of treatments, reformation or protection,  or the study of the living conditions of the inmates thereof and make recommendations thereon to the government.
d. Review the safeguards provided by or under the constitution or any law for the time being in force for the protection of human rights and recommend measures for their effective implementation.
e. Review the factors, including acts of terrorism, that inhibit the enjoyment of human right and recommend appropriate remedial  measures;
f.  Study treaties and other international instruments on human rights and make recommendation for their effective   implementations;
g. Undertake and promote research in the field of human rights.
h. Spread human rights literacy among various sections of society and promote awareness of the safeguard available for the  protection of these rights through publications, the media, seminars and other available means.
i.  Encourage the efforts of non-governmental  organizations and institutions working in the field of human rights;
j. Such other functions as it may consider necessary for the promotion human rights.
The Commission shall, while inquiring into a complaint, have all the powers of a civil court trying a suit under the Code of civil  procedure, 1908
The Commission may, for the purpose of conducting any investigation pertaining to the inquiry, utilize the services of any officer or investigation agency of the Central Government or any State Government with the concurrence of the Central Government or the State Government as the case may be.

If at any stage of the inquiry, the Commission-
a)  consider it necessary to inquire, into the conduct of any person or,
b)  is of the opinion that reputation of any person is likely to be prejudicially affected by the inquiry, It shall give to that person a reasonable opportunity of being heard in the inquiry and to produce evidence in his defense.