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NHRC got 'highest' 9 lakh complaints from UP


Press Trust of India Gandhinagar
The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) today said it received 17.5 lakh complaints from across the country in the last 25 years and the most from Uttar Pradesh.
Of the total complaints the commission received since 1993, when NHRC was set up, 26,500 came from Gujarat, which is less as compared to many other states, NHRC's secretary general Ambuj Sharma said.
"Out of the 17.5 lakh complaints of human rights violations since 1993, just 26,500 came from Gujarat, while the highest, that is nine lakh, was from Uttar Pradesh. It shows that complaints from Gujarat were less," he told reporters after the conclusion of the two-day open hearing session.
Asked about Gujarat's human rights record, NHRC chairman Justice (retd) H L Dattu said the commission was "satisfied" with the state's performance.
"By and large, we are satisfied with their work. We can certainly say that the human rights violation is not much in Gujarat. The state is very sensitive towards that issue and they do take steps whenever any violation take place," the former Chief Justice of India said.
However, he said, there was still scope for improvement in some areas.
During the two-day open hearing session held at the Gujarat Police Academy in Karai village near here, the NHRC took up 136 cases, mostly involving SC/ST victims.
These cases came from various parts of Gujarat and the adjoining Union Territories and were separately heard by Justice Dattu and three NHRC members - Jyotika Kalra, D Murugesan and P C Ghose - yesterday, while some important cases were heard by the entire commission in a joint sitting today.
Some of the important cases took up by the commission included child mortality, river pollution, children being forced to swim a river to attend school in Junagadh, deaths due to silicosis, allotment of land to Dalits and compensation to the kin of the victims of manual scavenging.
While hearing the case of persons who died while cleaning manholes, Jyotika Kalra instructed the state government to provide free of cost mechanical devices to the 'safai kamdars', so that they don't have to enter the manholes.
"We have learned that compensation of Rs 10 lakh, as directed by the Supreme Court in 2014, was paid to the kin of only 39 victims out of total 161 persons, who had died since 1993. The state Chief Secretary assured us that he will take up this matter," Kalra said.
In the cases of non-allotment of land to Dalits by the government, Dattu instructed the officials concerned to take immediate steps and allot the land.
The Commission also asked the Chief Secretary as well as the state DGP to work towards eliminating the practice of untouchability and caste-based discrimination.
While taking up a case wherein students were forced to swim across a river to attend their school in Junagadh district, Dattu called the authorities concerned and took an undertaking from them about the construction of the bridge.
"Notice was issued to the officials after we came across a news report that students of a village have to swim across a river to reach their school. We have taken an undertaking from the officials that the bridge will be constructed in three months," he said.

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First Published: Apr 27 2018 | 10:40 PM IST

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