Regional convention: Atrocities upon minorities, SC, backward class, women and human rights defenders.The section 330, 331of the IPC and the section 29 of the Indian Police Act prohibits torture. Torture is a heinous crime and a blot on humanity. The Supreme Court and human rights commission have taken steps for eradication of torture on many occasions in the past but in this developed and so called civilized society there has been no curb in the torture in the name of caste-creed, class, sex, religion as it was expected after putting in the efforts.
The face of torture gets further cruel when those who are entrusted with the task of safeguarding the interest and honour of suppressed and feeble groups or people through the constitutional powers, themselves exploit the weaker section in the name of religion, sex, caste.
PVCHR has been working for the past 15 years to safeguard the interests and rights of minorities, SC/ST, women and children, their constitutional rights in the constitutional democracy and the human rights defenders working for this section of people. The regional convention on June 26, 2011 is another step. With it an attempt was made to bring forth voice of women, children, minorities, tribal, scheduled castes, in the mainstream. Regional convention is a medium for suppressed/victims to come together and raise a voice, which could make an intervention against the torture and suppression in practice since ages. PVCHR called off and Dynamic Action Group (DAG) played a significant role as an organizor with it an attempt was made to bring forth voice of women, children, minorities, backward caste people, tribal, scheduled castes, in the mainstream dynamics. Regional convention is a platform for suppressed/victims to come together and raise a voice, which could make an intervention against the torture and suppression in practice since ages.
On June 26, 2011 on the occasion of International Day Against Torture the regional convention at Lucknow the state capital of Uttar Pradesh was participated by likeminded sensitive people and organisations from Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, West Bengal, New Delhi, Bihar and other states. In the convention Dynamic Action Group (DAG), Voice of People (VOP), National Alliance on Testimonial Therapy (NATT) and Right to Food and Work, Uttar Pradesh, Detention Watch played significant role.
The other associated organisations were: Saathi, tarun Chetna, Gramya,Roji Roti Sangathan, Dalit Mahasangh, Disha Sansthan, Bundelkhand Sewa Parishad, PUCL, Dr Ambedkar Social Welfare Society, Jagriti Sewa Sansthan, Sanchetna, Shikhar Prashikshan Sansthan, Dwaba Vikas Samiti,Human Rights Law Network, CERT, Jan Adhikar Manch, Jan Shikshan Kendra, Gramya Swaraj Samiti, Kanhar Bachao Andolan, Musahar Vikas Manch, Gramin, Yuva Evam Bal Vikas Parishad, Pani, Insaf Uttar Pradesh, Swaraj Utthan Samiti, Institute of Social Development Trust,Sangram, Bahujan Kalyan Parishad, Astitva, Rojai Manav Vikas Parishad,Aman-Uttar Pradesh, Sonebhadra Vikas Samiti, Uttar Pradesh, Gramin Evem Khatihar Majdoor Union, Uttar Pradesh, Shahri Gareeb Kamgar Sangarsh Morcha, Vigyan Foundation, Shahri Garib Morcha, Mahila Foundation, Dehat, Asian Brij-India, Adiwasi Mahila Vikas Samiti, OM India, Parmarth, Pahuj Vikas Manch, Apda Niwaran Manch, Savitri Bai Phoole Mahila Panchayat, Rojgar Haq Abhiyaan, Prerna Kala Manch.
Honorable Anil Kumar Parashar joint registrar focal point Human Rights Defenders National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) presided over the programme. The chief guest in the event was Dr PL Punia chairperson of the National SC/ST Commission, New Delhi, while the special guest for the programme were Ram Kumar coordinator DAG and Renuka Srinivasan from European Union.
The programme started with the song "Tu jinda hain to jindagi kee jeet par mein yakin kar." Bindu Singh welcomed the victims and the guests in the programme. Dr Lenin general secretary of PVCHR presented the theme and agenda of the programme and discussed threadbare the objective of the programme. He also explained the work and objectives of PVCHR. During the event Dr. PL Punia, AK Parashar, Ram Kumar and Renuka expressed their views. The campaign "There are rights even during an arrest" detention Watch: Giraftari Par Gasth"was kicked off by Anil Parashar and Renuka Srinivasan.
On the occassion Mr. Ram Kumar- an icon of dalit rights, Mr. Parvez Ahmad, Ms. Rachna and Ms. Shanti were honored with the Jan Mitra Award. The program hall was named in the memory of Sri Hari Lal as Late Hari Lal Nagar.
Dr. P.L Punia, Chairperson National Scheduled Caste Commission," today also the dalit, minority and poor people are implicated in the fake case under various section of IPC. He especially thanks to Dr. Lenin Raghuvanshi & Ram Kumar for inviting him in this auspicious occasion to speak and he also appreciated the work of the Dynamic Action Group (DAG) and Peoples' Vigilance Committee on Human Rights (PVCHR).
The victims present in the regional convention shared their experiences. Md Inam who works for reliance group is a resident of Meerut city where on the intervening night of April 24-25, 2011 his one and half year old daughter Akifah, wife Shaista, son Aman (5), a relative Farzana, Shahid, Asika (12 days), Saba and Shahida got severe burn injuries when hooligans set ablaze their house. The violent mob ransacked their house, set their car and bike on fire and took away valuables. The local Meerut administration didn't took note of their complaint neither the state administration. Even complaint at national level could not bring relief to the victims. Officials of the PVCHR raised their voice again after which the DIG handed over a probe to the SSP Meerut. The Governor too directed principal secretary (home) for action in to the case.
Md Inam came with his family to participate in the regional convention. He says, "When I came here people asked me whether I have come from Meerut. I felt relief after many weeks as people in the convention know the suffering of each other. The riots had given me immense pain by people from the Hindu community. I feel relieved when I see people such as Dr Lenin and organisations such as PVCHR who stand by the victims and share their plight. Having came here I feel I should also stand with other the victims and fight for their cause. If other victims need me I shall always be ready to work for them"
Jamshed has come from Aligarh Uttar Pradesh. His father Abdul Aziz (59) was picked up by cops on the night of May 8, 2011 and was tortured the whole night. The torture was such that he died in police custody. The post mortem report said death was caused due to pressure on the neck. The deceased Abdul was fighting against land mafia Rashid and builder Samarth Mittal. Himself, Abdul was a class four employee with the Aligarh Muslim University. The vicious nexus of the land mafia and builder with the police took life of Abdul Aziz. However the struggle of Abdul is now being taken ahead by his son Jamshed, who is fighting mafia as well as the police.
Jamshed says, "All my close relatives and friends have left me and my family under threat from the mafia and police but the PVCHR-Aligarh team is giving me all support in my fight. Having seen victims like me and the success they have achieved after struggle I feel a boost and the self confidence level in me has gone up. I believe those who took life of my father will get punished."
"Our belief upon the constitution and brotherhood was became weak after the communal riots in Sahaspur (Muradabad) took place on the intervening night of February 16-17, 2011 and the local administration took one side action against the Muslims. Even when the team of PVCHR came to the place and we saw 90% Hindu we were afraid but when the Governor took notice of the incident and ordered for a probe along with the DGP our confidence started coming back," Abdul Kuddus says and added that having come to the regional convention it seems torture is not being done only in the name of religion but at all levels.
Anil Parashar spoke to the victims and assured that action will be taken. Hindustan Times, Pioneer and representatives of other news papers too spoke to the victims. The complaint of the victims was handed over to Anil Parashar and Dr PL Punia. The convention declaration was read by Ashish Awasthi while vote of thanks was given by Shruti Nagvanshi the managing trustee of PVCHR/Jan Mitra Nyas.
Note: Full report in Hindi & English will be share very shortly