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Published by: Priya Shah on Jul 24, 2012
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: The definition of human rights according to Section 2(d) of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 is as follows: “Human rights mean that 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.” Ensuring the safety of the life and property of its citizens is one of the basic responsibilities of the government in all societies. It is by establishing and maintaining an efficient and an effective police force that the government provides a feeling of security to its citizens. However collective security enjoyed by the citizens is not enough; in a democratic society, they also want to enjoy their individual freedom and rights, without unwarranted and illegitimate interference by a coercive and an insensitive police force. . Police have to play a vital role as the protector of Human Rights. And the role of the police is to maintain the law and order in the country. In exercising proper control and superintendence over the police, holding them accountable for the various acts of commission and omission and bringing them close to the community, therefore, become issues of utmost importance in a democratic country. Police work encompasses preventive and protective roles in the course of maintaining law and order. In addition, prevention and protection involve initiating programs to reduce caste and communal tensions, reduce opportunity for criminal victimization and educate the citizens about the crime prevention measures. Secondly, police work also involves many tasks that occur well beyond public notice and that are often time consuming, overly routine, and excessively burdensome. It is necessary creating a platform for the police officers to share their views and problems faced by them in implementation of human rights jurisprudence at the grassroots level. Police enjoys tremendous legal power regarding the security of life and liberty of the people. More than fifty percent of the complaints registered by the National Human Rights Commission are belong to police. These are complaints pertain to indiscriminate arrests, illegal detention, custodial violence, torture, rapes and deaths in custody. The people's expectations on Police are high in comparison to other government functionaries and often the police are not able to come up to people‟s expectations. . Hence, police should give priority in protecting the rights of the vulnerable section of the society.

DID YOU KNOW THE MUMBAI POLICE FORCE IN ITS EARLY AVATAR WAS FORMED BY A UNIT CALLED THE BHANDARI MILITIA. System of modern policing in Mumbai began with the establishment of a Police Out-post by the Portuguese in 1661. Later in the year 1669 when the East India Company acquired Mumbai, Gerald Aungier became the Governor of the City and is considered the founder of the city's present Police Force. He organized the Bhandari Militia with Subhedars head quartered at Mahim, Sewree and Sion. He died at Surat in 1677. During John Child's Governorship (1681-90) in the year 1682 there was only one ensign for the whole force of 500 militia, and of non-commissioned officers there were only three sergeants and two corporals. On February 17, 1779, Mr. James Tod was appointed as "Lieutenant of Police" on probation with an allowance of Rs. 4 per diem and on March 3rd of that year he was sworn in to office. Tod had a chequered career as head of the Bombay Police. Tod's regulations, which numbered 41, were the only rules for the management of the force which had been passed up to that date in a formal manner. He had twice been indicted for felony and had been honorably acquitted on both occasions: but he still lived in continual dread of blame. On March 29th, 1780 the office of the Lieutenant of Police annulled and office of Deputy of police on fixed salary of Rs. 3000/- a year created in its place. On April 5th ,1780 Tod formally relinquished his formal office and was appointed as Deputy of Police. Subsequently his designation was changed to "Deputy of Police and High Constable". Three years later, in 1790, Tod's administration came to an inglorious end. He was tried for corruption.

As a product of the society, policemen also display the same characteristics manifest in our society. It is not without reason that the quality of police in any society is generally taken today as an index of the quality of civil life in that society. However, as a trained force, police are expected to be a shade better than the general population. But, this is not happening. If human rights violations by the police in the West are the outcome of racism and other human passions, here in India it is largely linked to criminality in the force. This is a serious situation that needs urgent attention from the part of the administrators. It reveals gross inadequacies in the selection and training of policemen. I am not of the view that training alone would improve professionalism in the force. An institutional culture, ably nurtured by higher ups in the police administration is needed. The culture of secrecy in Government institutions helps those violating human rights. Secrecy helps to restrict media coverage and public awareness of such events. Reports about human rights violations are kept secret. This helps their suppression. The tendency of the Government is to deny such incidents. The present Governments has denied that there had been any lock up deaths after it came to power while others have documented at least half a dozen incidents. The preventive detention laws serve as another cover for those violating human rights. It is ironic that leaders from A. K. Gopalan, who was held in 1950, to today's Central Ministers had been held under such laws in a democratic country like ours. Such happenings are a slur on our democratic credentials. In general, however, people's ambivalence towards the police and their negative opinions of police work and behavior come mainly from a lack of understanding of the nature of police work and of the social, Organisational and logistic constraints that shape its course. This ambivalence is further fuelled by the allegations of human rights violations by the Police. Because of this, the police have come under severe criticism by public and media and the strict scrutiny of the Courts, National Human Rights Commission and State Human rights Commission.But from fieldwork experiences and cases illustrated in the annual reports of National Human rights Commission it was found that there are a number of allegations of human rights violations leveled against the police. The reasons behind this could be the stress and frustration in the job, complexity involved, and growing criminality, which are not analyzed; and that in turn results in the gross violation of human rights.

Existing laws, particularly with regard to the country's criminal justice system will affect the behaviour and outlook of the police force. In its 2003 human rights day statement, the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) warned of the increasing politically expedient laws and practices that are being favoured over international law throughout the world. The Indian government often excuses itself from ratifying the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) on the ground that all the provisions of the CAT are already in the constitution. The argument is spurious. For a constitutional remedy, a victim must go to a High Court or Supreme Court. Such action is beyond the means of most persons in the country, and certainly these courts could not manage even a fraction of the existing torture cases in India today. There is no specific legislation on torture whereby a case can be filed at a local court. Under the Indian Penal Code, torture is not mentioned as a crime. There is only a section providing that 'excesses committed by a police officer' or forced confessions are illegal. However, under this section it has to be proved that the offence was committed in conjunction with the person's authority in order to demonstrate the gravity of the act. Under the Criminal Procedure Code, a magistrate can order an inquiry into a complaint of torture. However, this inquiry will likely be undertaken by the same police station where the accused is on duty. The result of such an inquiry is easy to imagine. For these reasons, few complaints are ever filed, and even fewer are actually taken to court. Despite some judicial interventions against torture committed by the police, such as the Supreme Court's recommendations in the D K Basu case, the situation has not improved. Even though India is a common law country, in practice, the D K Basu recommendations are not followed. There is also some question as to how many police officers are actually aware of these recommendations. In any case, the Indian government must come up with actual remedies to address torture, which can only be done by effective domestic legislation, in other words, ratifying and implementing the CAT. Furthermore, the Committee on Reforms of the Criminal Justice System, set up by the Government of India in November 2000, supposedly to assess and propose changes to the way criminal trials are conducted, has proposed measures that allow the police greater control over the judiciary and prosecution, while at the same time curtailing the rights of the accused. For instance, the Committee has suggested that an officer at the rank of Director General of Police be appointed as Director of Prosecution. This appointment would virtually end the separation of the criminal investigation and prosecution functions, as both would be in the hands of the police. This proposal together with the suggestions that

the burden of proof be changed from "proof beyond reasonable doubt" to a "clear and convincing" standard of proof as well as that confessions be made admissible by amending section 25 of the Evidence Ordinance, would mean that the police would have greater room to abuse their power and the rights of victims. From what has already been described about the police, no one interested in effective rule of law and human rights principles would say that such proposals are the way towards ensuring justice.

Tamil Nadu chief minister M Karunanidhi asked policemen to respect individual freedom and human rights while arresting or interrogating persons wanted in connection with various cases. "Policemen must work within the ambit of human rights and personal freedom of accused and implement the directions given by the Supreme Court and state government during arrest or interrogation of the accused. They should especially ensure that no custodial deaths occur," he said. In his address at the concluding day of the two-day district collectors and police officers' conference here, Karunanidhi said police should be dispassionate and unbiased in tackling any criminal or other law and order issues affecting the common man. He said that legal provisions should be used without any hesitation by police against persons committing various crimes including those creating law and order problems, instigating caste-related conflicts and encroaching public and private property. Urging the personnel in khaki to be cordial to persons coming to police stations to file complaints and treat them with dignity, Karunanidhi, who holds the Home portfolio, said they should also have a "humanitarian angle" while dealing with people's problems. He lauded the police force for frequent conduct of exercises like 'Operation Barricade', 'Operation Rakshak' and 'Operation Hamla', to check the force' preparedness in case of any attacks from land or sea. He said the force should be sensitive to the problems of senior citizens and asked them to take strict action against crimes perpetrated on them.

The Government generally respected the human rights of its citizens; however, numerous serious problems remained. Police and security forces were sometimes responsible for extrajudicial killings, including staged encounter killings, and custodial deaths. Government officials often used special antiterrorism legislation to justify the excessive use of force while combating active insurgencies in Jammu and Kashmir and several northeastern states. Security force officials who committed human rights abuses generally enjoyed de facto legal impunity, although there were numerous reports of investigations into individual abuse cases as well as punishment of some perpetrators. Other violations included: torture and rape by police and other government agents; poor prison conditions; lengthy pretrial detention without charge; prolonged detention while undergoing trial; occasional limits on press freedom and freedom of movement; harassment and arrest of human rights monitors; extensive societal violence and legal and societal discrimination against women; forced prostitution; child prostitution and female infanticide; trafficking in women and children; discrimination against persons with disabilities; serious discrimination and violence against indigenous people and scheduled castes and tribes; widespread intercaste and communal violence; religiously motivated violence against Muslims and Christians; and widespread exploitation of indentured, bonded, and child labor. Separatist guerrillas in Kashmir and the Northeast committed numerous serious abuses, including killing armed forces personnel, police, government officials, and civilians. They also engaged in torture, rape, and other forms of violence, including beheadings, kidnapping and extortion  In June, Gujarat police killed three men and a woman, alleged to have been on a mission to kill Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) asked the Director General of Police and Senior Superintendent of Police in Ahmedabad to investigate. Human Rights activists challenged police allegations that these persons were linked to this plot, but the case was never fully resolved. A Gujarat court later dismissed charges against 13 other persons implicated in this case due to lack of evidence. The family members of those killed did not file petitions claiming the killings were extrajudicial, and no action was taken against police involved in the killing.  In December 2003, the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister reported that there had been 8 custodial deaths in the state during the year, compared to 11 in 2001. According to the authorities, many died from natural causes aggravated by poor prison conditions (see Section 1.c.). Human rights groups noted that police officials often refused to turn over the bodies of dead suspects in cases of suspected staged encounters. The bodies of dead suspects were often cremated before their families could view them. In 2002, the Supreme Court ordered the central government and local authorities to conduct regular checks on police stations to ascertain the incidence of custodial violence; however, the overwhelming majority of police stations failed to comply. There were

reports of deaths in custody resulting from alleged torture or other abuse. Deaths in custody were common both for suspected militants and criminals. The Home Ministry reported that, nationwide, deaths in custody had increased from 1,340 in 2002 to 1,462 by the end of 2003. According to the NHRC, state governments had not investigated  In May, in Ambedkarnagar, Uttar Pradesh, police arrested a day laborer and tortured him when he failed to pay a $1000 (Rs. 50,000) bribe. According to media reports, police admitted the victim to the hospital under a false name after injecting him in the rectum with petrol. Police also threatened to harm his family if he reported the incident. The Delhi High Court filed a case against police when it learned of the matter and called the Deputy Chief of Police to testify. The case was ongoing at year's end.  In January, in the Netarhat region of Jharkhand, local tribal organizations protested what they described as illegal activities by the Army. Tribal groups claimed that the army did not provide prior notification that all villagers should vacate their homes in advance of artillery practice as required under the Maneuvers Field Firing and Artillery Practices Act. The Defense Ministry ordered the army to cease its activities only after the local inhabitants involved the governor (see Section 5).  In October, the press reported that eight states (Andhra Pradesh, Rajasthan, Orissa, Haryana, Chhattisgarh, Madya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, and Maharashtra) have enacted two-child laws, which provide incentives in government jobs and subsidies to those who have no more than two children. For example, during the year, village council members in Chhattisgarh who violated this prohibition were reportedly dismissed from their positions. National health officials in New Delhi noted that the Government was unable to regulate state decisions on population issue.  In July, disabled rights NGOs reported that the disabled were not able to obtain duty free imports of artificial limbs, crutches, wheelchairs, walking frames, and other medical needs. They also claimed that no effort was being made to make railway compartments, platforms, and railways accessible to the disabled, and noted that less than 1 percent of the disabled were employed.  In March, disabled rights activists reported that airlines and airports were not providing adequate accommodations for the disabled. These included failure to adjust toilets, eating and water facilities, and accessible parking for the physically impaired.

 In February in Baramulla, Jammu and Kashmir, one person was killed and two wounded when police opened fire to disperse demonstrators protesting against human rights abuses allegedly perpetrated by security forces.  On August 1, police fired tear gas at a procession of citizens protesting human rights abuses committed by security forces under the AFSPA in Imphal, Manipur, wounding 15 protestors. The The Manipur government had banned the demonstration.. On August 4, police fired into another procession in Imphal, wounding 18. These protests exacerbated longstanding tensions between the civilian population and the security forces in Manipur.  On August 4, police in Bihar fired into a crowd that had gathered outside a government office expecting flood relief, killing a 14-year-old boy. Police officials claimed that the police fired in self-defense after the mob went on a rampage and began throwing stones. No action was taken against the police.  NGOs must secure approval from the Ministry of Home Affairs before organizing international conferences. Human rights groups contended that this provided the Government with substantial political control over the work of NGOs and their freedom of assembly and association. NGOs alleged that some members were denied visas to enter the country. The Persons with Disabilities Act provides equal rights to all persons with disabilities; however, advocacy organizations admitted that its practical effects have so far been minimal, in part due to a clause that makes the implementation of programs dependent on the "economic capacity" of the Government. Widespread discrimination occurred against persons with physical and mental disabilities in employment, education, and in access to health care. Neither law nor regulation required accessibility for persons with disabilities. Government buildings, educational establishments, and public spaces throughout the country have almost no provisions for wheelchair access. The Constitution provides for freedom of assembly and association, and the Government generally respected this right in practice. The authorities sometimes required permits and notification prior to holding parades or demonstrations, but local governments ordinarily respected the right to protest peacefully, except in Jammu and Kashmir, where the local government routinely denied permits to separatist parties for public gatherings and detained separatists engaged in peaceful protest. During periods of civil tension, the authorities may ban public assemblies or impose a curfew under the Criminal Procedure Code.

Any institution is governed by its mandate and code of conduct, both of which will be affected by the reasons for its establishment. The police force too, is an institution established for specific reasons, which then shape the behaviour and attitude of those within it. In many Asian countries the police force was created during the colonial era. The 1861 Police Act in India-which to this day is the guiding legislation over the Indian police force-is an authoritarian instrument devised to suit the specific needs of the colonial rulers. The Indian police force was conceived in the aftermath of the 1857-58 uprising and was "obliged to quell dissent and enforce obedience whatever the costs. [The] basic duty was to provide an ambience of peace and tranquility for the singleminded exploitation of the enormous resources of raw materials and a captive market" [Manoje Nath, 'Human rights and the police', Policing India in the new millennium, P J Alexander (ed.), Allied Publishers, New Delhi, 2002, p. 463]. The current government also confers arbitrary power to the police on the pretext of maintaining law and order, thereby legitimizing human rights violations. It follows that there would seem to be little difference between the motives giving birth to the Indian police 150 years ago, and present-day motives for using it to maintain the status quo. The use of such archaic mandates together with conflicting political stances is the reason that policing institutions throughout Asia are lacking in discipline. Unless this breakdown in discipline is addressed, little can be done to improve the effective functioning of the police, as well as regain public confidence in the institution. The following issues, which have concern with the police and their functioning, that are based on the National Police Commission report: 1. Political pressure on the police officers. 2. Frequent threat of transfer by politicians 3. District police taking instructions from Headquarters for every small decision. 4. Lack of leadership in the police. 5. After communal riots, there are always some police officers, against whom action is taken and others go Scot-free. Some of the important observations made by Higher Judiciary: 1. Supreme court has ruled out that the investigation of police is beyond any interference by executive 2. The police should give all the facts to the press, otherwise the press will report whatever it has. 3. The evidence given by the police should be taken into consideration

The Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) Justice K. G. Balakrishnan on Thursday asked the country‟s top police officials to understand that a misplaced protective approach, towards the acts of omission and commission by their subordinates, breeds an attitude of impunity which was very harmful in long run in protecting the human rights of the people. The Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission has urged India's senior police officials to address issues around 'fake encounters' and custodial violence. Addressing a conference of the State police chiefs, Inspectors-General of Police and senior intelligence officials in New Delhi, he said : “They [senior police officers] need to ensure that their subordinates work with the spirit to promote rule of law which alone can serve as a guarantee against violations of human rights.'' It was for the first time that the annual conference, organised by the Intelligence Bureau, devoted an hour-long interaction with the NHRC chairperson and four NHRC members on sensitising senior police officers about creating a security environment that promotes good governance and upholds human rights. Union Home Secretary G. K. Pillai and Intelligence Bureau chief Rajiv Mathur were present during the interaction, which saw many police chiefs raising queries and narrating their experiences. “They [senior police officers] need to ensure that their subordinates work with the spirit to promote rule of law which alone can serve as a guarantee against violations of human rights,‟‟ Justice Balakrishnan said. The NHRC chief was addressing the conference of the State police chiefs, InspectorsGeneral of Police and senior intelligence officials here. It was for the first time that the annual conference, organised by the Intelligence Bureau, devoted an hour-long interaction with the NHRC chairperson and four NHRC members on sensitizing the senior police officers about creating the security environment that promotes good governance and upholds human rights of the people. Union Home Secretary G. K. Pillai and Intelligence Bureau chief Rajiv Mathur were present during interaction which saw many State police chiefs raising queries and narrating their experiences. “You have to ensure that, as the very first step, policemen do not, directly or indirectly, become violators of human rights. Only then they can act as protectors of human rights.

They should be sensitive and sympathetic to the plight of victims of crime,‟‟ Justice Balakrishnan told senior police officers. Pointing out that the police are the ultimate vanguards of human rights, NHRC Chairperson flagged two areas where police performances besmirches their image - police encounters and custodial violence. During the past three years, the Commission received 212 complaints of deaths in alleged “fake encounters” by the police, which seriously erode the credibility of the police and do not act as a deterrent or controlling crime. “The senior leadership has to give serious thought to it and guard against a tendency of accepting that such fake encounters enjoy public support,‟‟ NHRC Chairperson said.

Voicing concern over custodial violence, Justice Balakrishnan said that such a crime can certainly be prevented by the police themselves. He asked the police chiefs to provide leadership to their forces for “zero tolerance” for custodial violence. He also asked the heads of police forces to “devise ways and means” to reduce the gap between the expectations of the people from the police and the actual service being delivered to them. “You have to reach out to those sections of society who may not be in a position to raise their voice against exploitation due to ignorance, backwardness, illiteracy and poor economic conditions,‟‟ Justice Balakrishan said. Noting that guaranteeing the basic human rights of the police and basic amenities of the service were the best way to motivate the policemen to discharge their duties, NHRC Chairperson said transparency and impartiality of mechanisms of accountability create strength and credibility for the police. “In other words, a democratic country like India needs democratic policing. Democratic policing is based on the idea of the police as protectors of the rights of citizens and the rule of law which ensuring the safety and security of all equally,‟‟ Justice Balakrishnan told the State police chiefs and senior security officials. “In other words, a democratic country like India needs democratic policing. Democratic policing is based on the idea of the police as protectors of the rights of citizens and the rule of law which ensuring the safety and security of all equally,'' he said.

Most people have heard the argument that respect for human rights is somehow opposed to effective law enforcement. And effective law enforcement means to capture the criminal. And to secure his conviction, it is necessary to “bend the rules” a little. A tendency to use overwhelming force in controlling demonstrations, physical pressure to extract information from detainees, or excessive force to secure an arrest can be observed now and then. In this way of thinking, law enforcement is a war against crime, and human rights are merely obstacles thrown in the path of the police by lawyers and NGOs. In fact, violations of human rights by police only make the already challenging task of law enforcement more difficult. When the law enforcer becomes the lawbreaker, the result is an assault on human dignity, on the law itself and on all institutions of public authority. The effects of police human rights violations are multi-fold:  They erode public confidence  They hamper effective prosecutions in court  They isolate the police from the community  They result in the guilty avoiding sentence, and the innocent being punished  They force police agencies to be reactive, rather than preventive in their approach to crime  They bring agents and institutions of public authority into disrepute  They exacerbate civil unrest

Respect for human rights by law enforcement agencies actually enhances the effectiveness of those agencies. Where human rights are systematically respected, police officers have developed professionalism in their approaches to solving and preventing crime and maintaining public order. In this sense, respect for human rights by police is, in addition to being a moral, legal and ethical imperative, also a practical requirement for law enforcement.

When the police are seen to respect, uphold and defend human rights:  Public confidence is built and community cooperation fostered  Legal prosecutions are successful in court  Police are seen as part of the community, performing a valuable social function  The fair administration of justice is served, and, consequently, confidence in the system  An example is set for respect for the law by others in the society  Police are able to be closer to the community, and, therefore, in a position to prevent and solve crimes through proactive policing  Support is elicited from the media, from the international community, and from higher authorities  A contribution is made to the peaceful resolution of conflicts and complaints

The effective training of police in human rights is an essential element in the global efforts to promote and protect human rights in every country. In order to protect human rights, the police must first know and understand them. Furthermore, police officers must be familiar with the various international guidelines and bodies of principles – such as the Code of Conduct for law enforcement officials and the principles on the use of force and firearms – and be able to use them as tools in their everyday work. They must understand the fact that international human rights standards concerning their work were developed to provide invaluable guidance for the performance of their crucial functions in a democratic society. However, police officers in the line of duty should know not only what the rules are, but also how to do their job effectively within the confines of those rules. Training efforts which do not cover those concerns will likely be neither credible nor effective. Throughout the training sessions, it is important to emphasize that knowledge of human rights is an essential professional requirement of all personnel serving in modern law enforcement agencies. The central purpose of policing, after all, is enforcement of the law, and no law stands higher in authority than the law of human rights.

In an important sense, a democratic police is a politically neutral police. Democratic societies strive for equal law enforcement. Police must discharge their duties in a nondiscriminatory manner. By this statement could be explained that law enforcement, public safety and protection of human rights must be handled in a manner which is fair and equal for all persons. Discrimination on the basis of race, gender, religion, language, complexion, political opinion, national origin, birth, property, ethnicity or other status in the delivery of police services is incompatible with policing in a democratic state. This principal applies to the recruitment, promotion, and assignment of police officers, as well. The composition of the police should reflect the public they serve. Should their personal attitude depart from the demands of the role they are playing, this must not affect their behavior. A multi-ethnic society places special demands on the police organization. As a result, the police must accept the need to adapt their professionalism, quality of service and their legal and wider responsibilities to the needs of a continually changing population. The goal is to provide services that are applicable and accessible to all citizens regardless of their ethnic background. In this world of ethnic and cultural diversity, the role of the police is crucial. With their special responsibility for the maintenance of law and order in society, the police are essential guardians of our social framework. The police have a professional interest in reflecting the same ethnic diversity in their organization. One of the most important means to reach this goal is recruitment. Recruitment of police officers from minority ethnic communities will have an additional cultural value that will be beneficial to the police department as well as to the society in genral. Ethnic diversity can benefit the entire organization and as a result promote professionalism. First of all, the the police must always act - and be seen to act - with unquestionable fairness towards all groups, and with clear respect for ethnic and cultural difference. Because of their highvisibility, the police must accept the fact that they need to act as a „role-model‟ for all public agencies in promoting fundamental rights. Secondly, if minorities are to overcome social obstacles and play their full part, the police must strive to use their special and unique powers in support of multi-ethnic ideals. They need to use the law to its fullest extent to combat acts motivated by racism and xenophobia. The police also need to work in a proactive manner to prevent such actions, and to assist ethnic and social integration.


People cannot take the law into their own hands. The rationale behind this reasoning is that the state is present to protect its citizens and to create an environment for realization of human rights. Citizens only have a limited right vested in themselves to protect their or anyone else's person or property which is guaranteed by the right of private defence. There is no right of private defence in cases where there is adequate time to have recourse to public protection . Anyone employing his right of private defence must justify that there was no reasonable time to approach the state institutions for help. Thus, citizens claim protection from the state for their welfare and it is the reciprocal obligation of the state to ensure the 'rule of law' through its institutions. The primary institution on which the state relies for the maintenance of law and order is the police. In order to achieve this objective, the police are empowered to use limited coercive power thereby creating conditions for realization of human rights cast a duty on the state to protect and promote human rights. Article 2(3)(a) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights mandates every state party to ensure that any person whose rights or freedoms as herein recognized are violated shall have an effective remedy, notwithstanding that the violation has been committed by persons acting in an official capacity. By virtue of being born a human, everybody has human rights which are inalienable and indivisible. Human rights are core values which the police have a moral as well as a legal duty to uphold. This is the essential difference that distinguishes good policing from bad. While discharging their duty, police have to confront human rights. In order to ensure the security and safety of the common mass, police cannot belittle the rights of an individual or a marginalized community. They have to maintain the delicate balance between protecting human rights and preserving the security of the people, which though difficult, is not impossible to achieve. Unfortunately, Indian police choose the easy way out.

Cops go on a rampage every now and then almost as if they are licensed to do so. But rarely ever do we hear them being punished for ghastly acts of violence perpetrated on innocent and peaceful protestors or other harmless citizens of their ilk. This sentiment was reflected in the response of many who watched, to their horror and absolute dismay, Mumbai cops brutally beating up medical students outside Raj Niwas, official residence of Maharashtra Governor S M Krishna. Viewers variously termed the gory sight as “horrendous”, “beastly”, “shameful”, “dreadful” and “inhuman”. Cops did not bother to first use water cannons or teargas shells-as is the norm-to disperse slogan-shouting students agitated over the reservation issue The white apron-sporting girls and boys were meted out third degree treatment as if they were hardened criminals. All this on the main road and in full public view. As usual, an enquiry has been ordered. No further action, no compensation for victims of custodial violence. Mumbai top cop was busy explaining the helplessness of a disciplined and law abiding force that only enforced certain provisions of the law meant to disperse an unlawful assembly. State‟s minister too found fault with the demonstrators as they informed the media about their action plan instead of the cops. He however, does not seem to have pondered over the widening of gap between citizens and law enforcing agencies. There have been many instances of misuse of power starting from the Jallianwala Bagh incident. Rulers have changed since then. Mindsets, alas, have not. To prevent increasing instances of incidents like this, Code of Police Act, Criminal Procedure and Indian Penal Code need to be suitably amended in consonance with democratic principles and covenants of human rights. Noted constitution expert and civil rights exponent Soli J Sorabjee is busy screening the two widely misused statutes. He is expected to submit his recommendations to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Sorabjee also feels the need for an “attitude change” in the police force. The new Police Act may reflect people‟s expectation that their basic rights are not violated with impunity by the State.

Recently, the Supreme Court also talked of intimate relationship between the cops. “Rarely in cases of police torture or custodial death, would direct ocular evidence of the complicity of the police personnel be available...” Judges observed. Yes, justice and truth are always the victims of this nexus between cops, ruling class and the perpetrators of crimes against society.

Letters were addressed to all the DGPs/Police Commissioners an Add DGP‟s/IGP‟s Human Rights on June 1st 1999 inviting their suggestions as to the role and duties that the Human Rights Cell of the State PHQ would undertake and perform. Based on the replies received and interaction with officers, the following guidelines are circulated for effective functioning of Human Rights Cells in the various police Headquarters:Human Rights Cell will act as the main link between the NHRC and the State Police Agencies. All –important cases/complaints referred by the commission to the State Human Rights Cell wherever specifically indicated would be got enquired into by an officer of an appropriate level. Thereafter the recommendations made by the commission are to e followed up to ensure appropriate action against the delinquent officials is initiated and remedial action taken, wherever required to the logical conclusion. However, in the cases where the Human Right Cell feels that an impartial; enquiry may not be possible due to the extraneous consideration, then it may recommend investigation by the State CID or even CBI. To keep a close watch on the alleged violations of Human Rights by police personnel which come to light through the newspapers/publications/others sources including complaints to different functionaries. All enquiries /cases relating to police atrocities/harassment/abuse of authority, being sent by the commission to the District Superintendent of police for ascertaining facts and verification, may be monitored by the cell. A copy of all such references will be sent to the Cell, to enable them to monitor timely response from the SP‟s. They will also ensure follow up action wherever specific directions have been passed by the Commission by way of compliance.

Human Rights Cells to regularly interact with DSPs on Human Rights petitions/complaints and issue instructions guidelines, so as to minimize and prevent violations of Human Rights by the police. To conduct surprise visits to police stations, to check cases of illegal detention and abuse of Authority. To take such other steps as may be necessary for preventing violation and protecting and respecting the Human Rights of the citizens who come in contact with the police functionaries. To ensure that all police stations in the State display the guidelines given by the Supreme Court in wp No.539 of 1986,in the case of D.K. Base V‟s State of West Bengal. These requirements are in addition to the constitutional and statutory safeguards and directions given by the courts from time to time in the connection with safeguarding of the rights and dignity of the arrestee vis a vis the duties of the police. Special care has to be taken to see that women, children and the vulnerable sections of society are not harassed by the police by calling them to the police station, in avoidable circumstances. To co-ordinate with the State Academy and Training Centers to ensure that their in service training curriculum have sufficient elements of Human Rights Jurisprudence for the trainees of all ranks. Such a module should aim at educating and sensitizing on the following matters;-

 Constitutional provisions relating to the rights of the citizens.  Key provisions in the substantive law that provide explicit “Do‟s” and Don‟ts” in matters of arrest, interrogation, search and seizure etc.  Landmark Judgments of the Supreme Court on Human Rights matters .  The implications of fall-outs and non-observance of the Human Rights guidelines/instructions/laws while discharging their duties and responsibilities. Organise interactive sessions/capsule courses of appropriate duration in all training institutions where prominent personalities, lawyers, NGO‟s are called for participation. Compilation of the departmental circulars and directions on the human rights mandate, issued by the PHQ from time to time to see that these are re-circulated for recapitulation. To identify specific areas of societal human rights violence‟s in the States and to plan out preventive and re-habilatative schemes in conjunction with the concerned departments {for instance in the field of child rights, sexual abuse and child labor} Gender Justice,

Juvenile Justice, on criminal mentally ill lodged in hospital discrimination towards the under privileged, backward, scheduled caste, scheduled tribes in specific areas etc. To Organise one day seminars/workshops on human rights in different cities in association with the State Human Rights Commission {wherever they are constituted}, local universities or colleges, philanthropic organisations like Lions /Rotary Club. Personally monitor investigation of cases relating to custodial deaths/rape and torture/ illegal detention in police custody and take remedial measures/follows up departmental action. Actively promote Human Rights literacy and awareness through publications and media programmes. Publication of quarterly newsletter on “Human Rights in Law Enforcement” for circulation amongst police offices.

Some training high lights are as follows :  Seminar on Human Rights on the theme " Rapport of the Police Force With Human Rights Awareness;  Seminar on violation of traffic regulations / violation of Human rights.  Training of trainers course in Human rights conducted by Padmashri Dr. Subramanian IPS (retd.)  Training Programmes for police officers in International Humanitarian Laws (IHL) and Human Rights Law:  United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Aided Project conducting of regional workshop for 3 days at the Police Training College, Ashok Nagar Chennai.  Police Training College-Pilot Programme for "Adventures in attitude" for senior Police officers organized by National Institute of Sports (NIS)- Patiala.  Reference received from Tribunal Human Rights Commission and State Human Rights Commission are being properly acted upon.  The Government have introduced the subject "Human Rights" in the training syllabus of all ranks PCs, SIs, DSPs and in the in-service training of HCs, SIs, Inspector of Police, DSPs, to stress the importance of human rights to Police so that they can take necessary action for the protection of Human Rights.

 All Police Stations are being upgraded in a phased manner to UNDP standards, in order to ensure that the Police personnel and public function in environment conducive to maintenance of human rights.

 The Police must bear faithful allegiance to the Constitution of India and respect and uphold the rights of the Citizens as guaranteed by it.  The Police should not question the propriety or necessity of any law duly enacted. They should enforce the law firmly, impartially, without fear or favour, malice or vindictiveness.  The Police should recognise and respect the limitations of their powers and functions. They should not usurp or even seem to usurp the functions of the judiciary and sit in judgement on cases to avenge individuals and punish the guilty. Likewise they have to follow the code of conduct for Law Enforcement Officials, adopted by the General Assembly of U.N. more particularly Article 2, which is as follows. In the performance of their duty, law enforcement officials shall respect and protect human dignity and maintain and uphold the human rights of all persons.

The Characteristics of the human rights. He said that human rights by nature are Universal, Inalienable, Undivided, Uniform, Fundamental, Developmental and Progressive. The role played by the Police could play a positive role in the protection of human rights in the following manner:         To contribute to the liberty, equality and fraternity in human affairs. To help and reconcile freedom with security and uphold the rule of law. To uphold and protect human rights of the citizens. To build up faith of the people in their protection of human rights by the state. To investigate, detect and prevent the offence. To deal with the minor child, in crisis. To accept public service is as a mission To understand the human rights in true spirit and uphold them.

1. The criticism, that people who talk about Human Rights do not understand the problems of the police, just as all other citizens have and the situation in which the police work also have to be looked into, and that should also be given publicity, because having good working conditions is their human rights 2. There is lot of political interference from the top, in the functioning of the police, which the people do not realise. Though we criticize the police in lot many ways, yet it is to be accepted that today Mumbai is the safest city in the country, and much of the credit for this goes to the police. 3. The people who are working on human rights issues have not given enough attention to the National Police Commission reports, which also focus on the working conditions of the police. 4. Media should also play its role here by highlighting and appreciating good investigation and work done by the police and not point out only the loopholes of the police functioning. 5. Stress was given on the fact that, all police commission reports, right from 1958, says that; general public does not consider police as a friend. There is a difference between respect for the police and fear for the police. What the citizens have for the police today is fear. 6. Women issues do not get adequate attention from the policemen. 7. Another issue was the role played by police in times of communal violence; the general belief among people is that police also act in a biased manner. 8. The issues of Dalits and backward communities do not get adequate attention from the police. All these issues need to be resolved by efforts from both sides – human rights activists and the police and what is needed is a friendly communication between police and the common man. People come to know about police from media and newspapers, which widens the gap between them and the protectors of law. The people‟s representatives should have

regular meetings with the police (at least once in a month) and discuss their problems and think of solutions. There is a need to bridge the gap between the police and the common man and this can be done by the combined efforts of the police, the media, the public, the human rights activists and the academicians. At the same time the problems faced by the policemen in discharging their duties should also be taken into consideration. The police officers have lots of legal powers to control the human rights violations and so it is there responsibility to protect human rights without succumbing to any kind of pressures like that of the media, public and the politicians.

 Efforts should be made to improve the investigative capacity of the police and their confidence.  Training should be intensified in scientific and technical investigations and adequate funds should be provided for the same  A new police culture is more important. All orders to an officer, for example, should come through a superior officer with Government communicating orders only through the Director General of Police.  It should be possible for the Human Rights Commissions or other independent agencies to review police investigations.  Higher police officers should be held responsible for failure to act on complaints about human rights violations by policemen under their command.  Awareness programmes should be held to conscientise people about their rights and duties.  There should be meeting, dialogue or conference amongst police, public and media.  Discussion on organised crime, inequality in Indian society, and criminalization of politics.  Participation of NGOs on the area of women and children, minorities, disabled and their marginalised section of the society.  Emphasis to be given on public –police relation.  Ways and means to improve the efficiency of the police in protection of Human rights.  Seminars on the interaction of the police with various Government functionaries like judges Department of women & child welfare etc, on various issues.

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