TODAY -

Indian NGOs slam India’s human rights situation & shrinking democratic space in UN evaluation

January 12, 2017



A number of non-governmental organizations have criticized the Indian government for its poor record with regard to critical issues such as harassment of civil rights activists, shrinking democratic space, discrimination against minorities, and condition of women, children, Dalits and tribal people in the country.

These and many more issues have been highlighted in The Joint Stakeholder’s Report on India’s overall human rights situation released by The Working Group on Human Rights (WGHR) in India and UN on 12th January 2017, at New Delhi. The report was submitted to the UN Human Rights Council for the upcoming third Universal Periodic Review of India due to take place at Geneva in May 2017, under which India’s human rights record, obligations and commitments will be evaluated by 193 member states of the UN at the UNHRC. More than a thousand NGOs, lawyers and activists from almost all states in the country have endorsed the report.

The speakers at the event were Mr. Henri Tiphagne, convenor of WGHR, who spoke at length about the shrinking democratic space in India for civil society. He said various UN bodies and several governments have expressed concerns on severe restrictions and actions by the Indian Government. He sais that the report endorsed by more than 1000 organizations in the country, echoes the need for the Indian Government to call for an open dialogue with the civil society before the UPR plenary session is held in May 2017. He also pointed out “as India claims to move ahead with developmental agenda, no development can be at the cost of crushing of fundamental rights of dissent and protest which are the basic elements of our democracy.”

Ms. Enakshi Ganguly, the Co-director of HAQ: Centre for Child Rights, pointed out that India spends merely 4% of the national budget on children. She said that it is sad that in a country that claims to have become a global leader in last three years, the status and condition of children have not seen any meaningful improvement since UPR 2. She strongly criticised the new Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection) Act 2015 which includes a “regressive provision of waiver of 16-18 year olds into the adult criminal justice system for serious offences & has led to the lowering of standards for dealing with children in conflict with the law.”

Ms. Vrinda Grover, senior human rights lawyer, expressed concern over the failure of the Indian state to honour its pledges at the earlier UPRs and highlighted that despite assurances to the Human Rights Council, India had still not ratified the Convention Against Torture, and no law against torture has been passed by the Indian Parliament to date. Terming this a damning blot on India’s human rights record she urged the Parliament to pass the Prevention of Torture law in compliance with CAT. Vrinda also said that the impunity for human rights violations by security forces in zones of conflict continue and further, no heed is being paid to recommendations by HRC member States, UN Treaty bodies and Special Rapporteours to repeal AFSPA. The reports from Chhattisgarh are very disturbing where adivasi women were being sexually assaulted and men killed in extra judicial killings by police and security forces; and lawyers, journalists, activists and academics highlighting these egregious violations are being targeted by the police and administration; She also emphasized that sexual violence against women remained widespread and systematic and the basic citizenship rights of half the population were infringed. The government must as a matter of highest priority ensure conditions where women enjoy their freedoms and live without fear.

She pointed out that “The climate of fear and hate being systematically promoted through vigilante mobs on the streets and online trolls against dissent, difference and diveristy poses a grave threat to democracy. The palpable strangulation of fundamental freeodms of thought, food habits, religious practice, sexualities was a cause of serious worry, particularly when the same received approval from political leaders. “

Other speakers included Mr. Miloon Kothari, former UN rapporteur who spoke on housing and land rights; Mr. Paul Divakar, General Secretary of National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights and Ms Maja Daruwala, senior Advisor CHRI. The WGHR Joint Stake Holders report deals with critical issues like social inequality, homelessness, cancellation of FCRA of NGOs, harassment of civil rights activists, shrinking of democratic in India as well as Dalit and tribal issues.

Some startling facts highlighted in the report are: India tops world hunger list with 194.6 million undernourished; has the world’s largest number of homeless and landless persons; the world‘s highest number of malnourished and hungry children; 56% rural households are landless; 30% of world’s poorest people and 10.2 million working children between 5-14 years. 68% prisoners are in pre-trial detention; Every third sanctioned post in the higher judiciary and every fourth in the lower courts is vacant; 5,650 Indian farmers committed suicide in 2014 i.e. 15 farmers a day; Between 2005 and 2015 more than 40 RTI activists are reportedly murdered and more than 250 others have been physically assaulted or harassed; India voted against a UN General Assembly resolution calling for moratorium on death penalty; India refused to adopt UN General Assembly resolution on human rights defenders in November 2015; India’s longest overdue report to the UN is to the Human Rights Committee last submitted in 1995.

Some of the recommendations in the report are: India needs to promulgate a national Right to Housing law, which commits to ending homelessness and evictions and segregation and ghettoisation; Promulgate a National Land Reform Act, ensuring land to the landless, especially SC/ST and women;Enact legislation to protect RTI activists from harassment and attacks; Withdraw retrograde amendments to the whistle-blower protection law and expand it to protect RTI users; Increase public health budget to 5% of GDP. Ratify ILO Convention 189, and ensure minimum wages, fair work conditions, and protection from all forms of abuse for domestic workers; prevent bio piracy of traditional knowledge and traditional resources; Ratify the Convention against Torture; Ratify the Convention against Enforced Disappearances; Review the current Juvenile Justice Act to bring in line with the principles of Constitution of India, UNCRC.

Furthermore the Indian government should enact a law, for the protection of human rights defenders and ensure that Focal Point on HRDs be made a full member of the Commission with powers as recommended by the UN Special Rapporteur on HRDs. Enact the Prevention of Communal and Targeted Violence Bill approved by the Indian Cabinet in December 2013 and formulate a national policy for Dignified Reparation of all individuals acquitted in terror related cases. Repeal the Habitual Offenders’ Act, 1952and the Prevention of Begging Act 1959for de-criminalization of the notified and DE notified tribes and amend or repeal the provisions of FCRA that restrict freedom of association in violation of India’s international human rights obligations.




* This Press Release was sent to e-pao.net by Human Rights Alert (HRA) who can be contacted at bloitongbam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This Press Release was posted on January 13 2017

* Comments posted by users in this discussion thread and other parts of this site are opinions of the individuals posting them (whose user ID is displayed alongside) and not the views of e-pao.net. We strongly recommend that users exercise responsibility, sensitivity and caution over language while writing your opinions which will be seen and read by other users. Please read a complete Guideline on using comments on this website.




LATEST IN E-PAO.NET
  • Chingarel Biodiversity Park #2 :: Gallery
  • Poukenpon, Nehkholam :: eMing
  • Manipur Girls win 'Oorja' National Football
  • My visit to Shri Lanka #2
  • Reforestation & afforestation
  • Coaching Scholarship to UPSC aspirants
  • Sendra Park & Resort #5 :: 360 ° View
  • Program Manager at Library for All, Ukhrul
  • Sadar Hills District Demand: News Timeline
  • Statement from NPF Kohima on BJP
  • NPF condemns Nagaland Governor
  • NPF snapping ties with BJP ..repercussion
  • Lesser truth in Manipur education sector
  • Landslide at Jiribam Highway #2 :: Gallery
  • Super Division Football #1 :: Gallery
  • Shirui Lily Festival 2017
  • On MPSC's new syllabus for MCSCCE
  • Death is An Art :: Poem
  • Assistant professor, ECE wanted at NERIST
  • New Head Coach Joao Deus for NEUFC
  • Free eye care camp at Loktak Power Station
  • 40 positions in Bangalore & Hyderabad
  • Threats to the idea of Manipur
  • A virtual dream
  • Travelling in Ukhrul District #2 :: Gallery
  • Echoes of the people
  • Various shades of Irom Sharmila
  • High Court Campus, Imphal :: 360 ° View
  • The savage! :: Poem
  • Jobs for the unemployed
  • Scheduled Tribe ki list ta yaohallu
  • Humanitarian assistance to flood victims
  • The Killing Fields :: News Timeline
  • The call: Separate administration for tribals
  • Resignation of Parliamentary Secretaries
  • Tribute to Sapam Robinhood #2 :: Gallery
  • Imphal city flooded [13 July] #2 :: Gallery
  • The Suitable Boy
  • Fire safety and prevention #2
  • The Man with the Place :: Poem
  • How do we elect the President of India
  • NPF open to a total reconciliation process
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) Demand : Timeline
  • Plea to protect Manipur ponies
  • Also nail those who gave the order
  • Echum Lairembi, Khurkhul #2:: Gallery
  • Aerial survey of flood :: Gallery
  • Sendra Park & Resort #4 :: 360 ° View
  • Experience in Militarized Landscape
  • Medical: Humanitarian service or job security
  • Deconstructing "THE Thoughts"
  • Indo-Naga Talks 2017 :: News Timeline
  • Fate of JNIMS: MCI may cancel recognition
  • Landslide at Jiribam Highway #1 :: Gallery
  • Subroto Football @Wangjing #1 :: Gallery
  • Rejoinder to Bala & 'Manipuri Feminists'
  • Black sheep in the movement for ILPS
  • My visit to Shri Lanka
  • My First Acquaintance:: Poem
  • Present Flood Situation In Manipur #2
  • Representation submitted to Nagaland Guv
  • Wanted: Noah's Ark for NE
  • Blessing for Sharmila
  • Cabinet outside Imphal: Taking all on board
  • 'Huranbagi Tarani Mapugi nongma'
  • Imphal city flooded [13 July] #1 :: Gallery
  • Wari - Aben :: e-pao Radio
  • Kang Joydeva Chongba #2 :: Gallery
  • In the Quaint Leikai-Village of Kwatha
  • Manipur Sangai International Digital Salon
  • Imphal National Model Shooting Workshop
  • Awunching Biodiversity Park #1 :: 360 ° View
  • Effective Communication for Careers
  • Manipur Girls advance to semi finals
  • Eggs pass Manipur fitness test
  • Making their stand known: On collision..
  • Will BJP Govt. able to defuse it
  • Battle Of Khongjom & Manipuris in 1891 #2
  • A Copula in Manipuri Language ?
  • Brain drain: A burning issue in India
  • Seagull Seagull :: Poem
  • Minister Yitachu Speaks Out
  • Rs 131 crore lost in Manipur flood
  • National media ignoring NE floods
  • It is BJP & BJP all over: Silence of Congress
  • Menace of Mob Justice
  • Professional Ethics or Personal Security
  • Tourist Watch Tower, Khongjom #2 :: 360 °
  • Monsoon rain :: Poem
  • Look Locally act Nationally
  • Nisa na khunaida piba cheitheng
  • Delayed 50 Bedded Tamenglong Hospital
  • NPF points out Model Code of Conduct
  • Hope for kin of 'fake encounter' victims
  • Next round of tripartite talks : Dists creation
  • The flash flood in Manipur is manmade
  • Ukhongsang village, Heirok :: Gallery
  • Sub-Junior Boys Football #2 :: Gallery
  • Unauthorized selling of high priced Meds
  • Once in a blue moon Chief Secretary
  • Free counselling program for students
  • Twinging Turns of Life :: Poem
  • Highways cut off, paddy fields inundated
  • Rights of the consumers
  • Echum Lairembi, Khurkhul #1:: Gallery
  • Kanglen Kang Chingba #2 :: Gallery
  • Edu Min @TG Higher Secondary :: Gallery
  • Cheiraoba Ching Kaba #8 :: 360 ° View
  • Head-huntings : Nagas' perspective #2
  • Personal chit chat: Modi & Trump
  • Emergency meeting of Naga People's Front
  • Removal of Armed Forces from Loukoipat
  • September ultimatum from JCILPS
  • Tribute to Sapam Robinhood #1 :: Gallery
  • Kang Joydeva Chongba #1 :: Gallery
  • Nabakishore's unceremonious removal...
  • The God was made :: Poem
  • Conference on Cinematic Tourism for NE
  • Promo Fashion Show of NE Fashion Week
  • ..ensure removal of army camp from Univ
  • Can Indo-Naga political issue be a secret
  • Kang Khichri chaba :: Gallery
  • Eyek Tamba :: Learn Manipuri script
  • Depigmentation- Hope for vitiligo patients
  • Van Mahotsava celebration 2017
  • Traffic issues of Imphal
  • A Bunch of Forget-me-nots :: Poem
  • NCC should become mandatory : Governor
  • Memo to CM on army camp at Manipur Univ
  • Unceremoniously showing the exit door
  • "Framework agreement" on the limelight
  • Camping @ Phangrei, Ukhrul #2 :: Gallery
  • Khongjom War Memorial #1 :: 360 ° View
  • Beat non-communicable diseases
  • Paramedical courses as career option
  • What is virtual reality of GST?
  • Soft Skill Trainer required at JCRE
  • NEFIS with MUSU meets army officials
  • Dynamic Enterpreneurship 2.0 at Imphal
  • Making education a free zone
  • Traffic haunt
  • Bone-Setter of Maiba-Maibi Laiyeng Pathap
  • Bhagirathi Ganga : Dance by Lianda Folk
  • Use coconut water for cleaning face skin
  • The will-o'-the-wisp
  • Appraising trajectory of migration in India
  • wakhal.com is hiring
  • Jobs at Vitsofts Tech, Canchipur
  • EMRS Kpi: Breaking Imphal monopoly
  • People spend 15-day in a year at traffic
  • Kanglen Kang Chingba #1 :: Gallery
  • Sub-Junior Boys Football #1 :: Gallery
  • Introspecting Some Old Games :: Folk
  • Head-huntings : Nagas' perspective #1
  • Myths and facts about beef ban
  • 2nd Prof. Mahale Memorial Talk at MU: Video
  • UDAY Scheme: Progress Snapshot
  • Disaster 2 month: Declaring State calamity
  • The wrath of Mother Nature
  • Battle Of Khongjom & Manipuris in 1891 #1
  • Kakching community gardening :: Gallery
  • 'One shop - One flower' at Kakching
  • Travelling along the infamous NH-2
  • The charge of Mothers :: Poem
  • Cinnamon to tackle metabolic syndrome
  • NSCN-IM & KIM must stop war of words
  • Nagaland CM hopeful of early solution
  • Need a strong Opposition: stand of Cong
  • Exploring the unexplored
  • Great June Uprising #4 :: Gallery
  • Id-ul-Fitr @Imphal #2 :: Gallery
  • Letter to Delhi Golf Club
  • Lost Tranquility :: Poem
  • Conference: India-Vietnam Relations
  • Smiles to Children of Blind School
  • Question of GST before the people
  • Kang Tournament #1 :: Gallery
  • Konung Kang Chingba #2 :: Gallery
  • Landscape of Ukhrul #1 :: Gallery
  • Football League @Awang Sekmai :: Gallery
  • Monna Sengao lakpa :: e-pao Radio
  • Books & Coffee: Trend set by Bishantham
  • Brahmacharimayum Roji-Photo #2 :: eRang
  • Junior Girls District Football #2 :: Gallery
  • Great June Uprising #3 :: Gallery
  • Kang Chingba @Singjamei :: Gallery
  • 15th Mega Miss North East :: Gallery
  • Mary Khyriem is Mega Miss North East
  • Suman Ningthoujam is Mega Mister NE
  • Three Mothers Art Gallery :: Gallery
  • Subhadra chhuri huranba :: Funga Wari
  • Angkor Wat - Cambodia #6 :: Gallery
  • Earth crack at Kangpokpi #2 :: Gallery
  • Lai Khong Chingba @Thangjing #4
  • Yeningthagi Wari Kumhei :: Gallery
  • Arbind Soibam (Singer) :: Erang Photos
  • Film Personalities #3 :: eRang Classic
  • Manipur Sangai Festival 2016 #5 : Ooba
  • HSE 2017 : Toppers in Science :: Gallery
  • Featured Photo for 2017 #2 :: Gallery
  • Landscape of Manipur #6: Wallpaper
  • SPONSORED ADS