Skip to main content

Delhi Police "indifference": Commonwealth advocacy group seeks urgent Apex Court, Govt of India intervention

By Our Representative
Prominent advocacy group, Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), has sought Supreme Court for “immediate” and “resolute” action against the Delhi Police for the recent assault on “students, teachers, mediapersons, opposition party workers, and eminent lawyers appointed by the Supreme Court to report on the situation in the Patiala House Court complex in Delhi.”
The statement by the top civil rights group comes just a day ahead of the scheduled hearing of the bail application of Kumar the Supreme Court. Accredited with the Commonwealth, CHRI has its offices in New Delhi, London and Accra, and enjoys special consultative status at the Economic and Social Council of the UN.
Especially taking exception to the assault on Kanhaiya Kumar, Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union president, who has been accused of sedition, the CHRI statement says, even judges were “heckled and intimidated into being forced to lock themselves in their courtrooms to conduct their proceedings peacefully.”
Calling it as the failure of the Delhi Police “to uphold their obligation to ensure safety for all”, it wants the Apex Court and the Government of India to take “all steps” to ensure that Kumar is safe during judicial remand at Tihar prison”, with his legal team being “assured access to justice and protected from any further attacks.”
“The due process of law guarantees every person the right to be produced physically and safely before the court. To thwart this is an unacceptable defiance of the Constitution”, the CHRI says, adding “Despite their presence in large numbers the police chose to be inactive and unable to prevent the violence.” 

Citizen safety at risk

“Not a single perpetrator was arrested on the spot. Specific orders had to be passed to the police before they committed to protect the court premises. This speaks volumes about the extent to which citizen safety from street violence has broken down”, CHRI underlines.
Calling it “more than a routine breakdown of law and order”, CHRI says, “It is nothing less than a barefaced assault on all the principles and values that our country is built upon. It amounts to an obstruction of justice and contempt for the Supreme Court’s pronouncements and the guilty must be brought to book.”
“The brazen resort to violence by the mob, which had active participation from lawyers and a politician is worthy of stringent penal action and must, as well attract strong condemnation and prompt disciplinary measures”, it insists.
Wajahat Habibullah, who is former chairperson of the National Commission for Minorities and former Central Information Commissioner, and currently chairperson of CHRI (India), has called the incident “a frontal assault on the rule of law and mainstay of our democratic structure”, adding, “The Delhi Police having failed to uphold that rule in the court premises now owes it to India's citizens that those who were responsible are brought to account."
Justice Ajit Shah, former chairman, Law Commission of India, and CHRI Executive Committee member, has called the events in the Patiala House courts as “extremely distressing”, pointing out that the young student leader was “not only not allowed to be properly represented or properly heard in the court, but was also manhandled.”
“This incident has raised many apprehensions about the respect for the rule. The role of the police in this incident is also questionable. The judicial machinery must step up and not allow such vigilante actions, especially in its courtrooms", Shah notes.
Insisting on fair trial, Maja Daruwala, director, CHRI, “The citizen cannot be left at the mercy of the mob. The fact that the strongest judicial oversight is now necessary is an indictment of the police and clear demonstration of its failure to protect and the selectivity of its approach. It is an indictment of the Bar Council which has failed to restrain its members from violating the basic tenets of their profession”.

Comments

TRENDING

US research: 40% of India's casteist Facebook posts are anti-reservation, anti-Dalit

By Rajiv Shah
A recent American civil society research has found that 40% of India's casteist posts on Facebook (FB) have anti-reservation slant. Asserting that the reservation policy in India is similar to affirmative action in the United States, the research study, titled "Facebook India: Towards The Tipping Point of Violence Caste and Religious Hate Speech", says, this type of hate content on FB is mainly directed against Dalits and Adivasis.

Sanjiv Bhatt paying price for deposing on Modi role in Gujarat riots: Wife Shweta

Counterview Desk
Following the Jamnagar sessions court ordering life imprisonment to former IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt for his alleged involvement in three decades old custodial death case, his wife Shweta Bhatt has said that he has been sentenced for a “for a crime he did not commit”, even as criticizing the Indian Police Service (IPS) Association, Gujarat, for not standing up for him.

Senior advocates targeted because they took up cases against Amit Shah: Lawyers' NGO

Counterview Desk
The Lawyers Collective (LC), an NGO claiming to promote human rights issues, has expressed surprise at the latest move by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to register an FIR against the Lawyers Collective (LC), its president Anand Grover and unknown office bearers for alleged violation of the Foreign Contributions Regulation Act (FCRA).

How Gujarat govt imposed curbs on livestock export for 'fear' of losing BJP vote share

By RK Misra*
Insidious are the ways authorities function, preaching one thing, practicing quite another. Administrative muscle-flexing to suit political goals was on display when the BJP-led Vijay Rupani government in Gujarat banned the export of livestock days ahead of Eid. Even the Narendra Modi-led government expressed its intent to confirm it countrywide, but stopped short of doing so.

One of the least peaceful countries, India's global peace ranking deteriorates: Report

By Rajiv Shah
A just-released report has asserted that India's ranking in the Global Peace Index (GPI) is 141st among 163 countries, deteriorating by four ranks in a year. Ranking 163 countries by providing a score to each, the report, prepared by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), headquartered in Sydney, Australia, has found India to be one of the least peaceful nations in the region.

Demand for Bharat Ratna to Dalai Lama as top RSS leader warns China of 'strong' action

Nava Thakuria*
Dharamshala: Indian supporters for a free Tibet have urged the Government of India to confer Bharat Ratna, the country’s highest civilian honour, on the Tibetan spiritual leader, the 14th Dalai Lama, for his “immense contributions” in creating goodwill for India in the last six decades. A declaration, adopted at the 6th All-India Tibet Support Groups’ Conference held on June 15 and 16 in Dharamshala township of Himachal Pradesh, said that the Nobel laureate continues to be a holy ambassador of Indian culture enriched with non-violence, compassion and religious harmony.

Sabarmati 'cleaned up' swimming pool style: Untreated effluents discharged in river

Counterview Desk
In a fresh letter to the secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEFCC), Government of India, senior Gujarat environmentalists Rohit Prajapati and Krishnakant of the Paryavaran Suraksha Samiti (PSS) have taken strong objection to the recent clean-up drive of the about 11.3 km stretch of Sabarmati riverbed undertaken by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation (AMC), terming it as “swimming pool type clean-up.” The river’s total length is 371 km.

Jharkhand mob lynching: Adivasis protest police 'inaction', FIR against victims

Counterview Desk
The Jharkhand Janadhikar Manch (JJM), a civil rights network, on Monday sponsored a protest against the police action against the Adivasi victims of the lynching which took on April 10, 2019, in Jurmu village of Dumri block in Gumla district of Jharkhand. The incident led the death of Prakash Lakda, aged 50.

Gujarat govt 'considers' temples, charitable institutions as shops and establishment

By Pankti Jog*
The Gujarat state assembly recently passed a new law which would "govern" the working condition of shops and establishments. One of the most talked about provisions of the Act is, it allow shops and establishments across Gujarat to function 24 hours.

There is no 'separate' Kashmir story, as there is for Afghanistan, Nepal, Tibet, Palestine

By Mohan Guruswamy*
Kashmir is the northernmost geographical region of South Asia. Until the mid-19th century, the term "Kashmir" denoted only the valley between the Great Himalayas and the Pir Panjal mountain range. The name Kashmir derives from the Sanskrit Kashyapmeru. The Greeks knew it as Kaspeiria. Herodotus called it Kaspatyros.