The Department of Law, Justice and Legislative Affairs of the Delhi Government has issued a notification on 24th November to designate the court of Additional Sessions Judge-02 in each District in the National Capital Territory of Delhi as a Human Rights Court.
The powers for the same is conferred by Section 30 of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993, the Lieutenant Governor of NCT of Delhi, with concurrence of the Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court, “is pleased to designate the court of Additional Sessions Judge-02 in each District as Human Rights Court”. Section 30 and 31 of the Act stipulate that the State Government, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the concerned High Court, shall specify for each District a Court of Session to be a Human Rights Court “for the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences arising out of violation of human rights”.
Further, the State shall also specify a Public Prosecutor or Special Public Prosecutor for the purpose of conducting cases in that Court.A Supreme Court Bench headed by then Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had issued notice to the Centre and States on a plea which sought for specification andsetting up of Human Rights Courts for each district across the country, as required under Sections 30 and 31 of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993.
The plea filed by law student Bhavika Pore, also sought for the appointment of Special Public Prosecutors (SPP) to conduct speedy trial of offence arising out of Human Rights violations, compulsorily within a specified time limit of 3 months.
“…even after passing of more than a quarter of a century, the respondents failed to establish the special Human Rights Courts in each district to conduct speedy trial of offences arising out of violation and abuse of human rights and also appoint a Special Public Prosecutor for the purpose of conducting trial in those Courts. Human Rights in India have been considered deplorable by countries and NGOs throughout the world. The recent India Human Rights Report 2018, which was published by the Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2018, United States Department of State, Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor provide a deep reality into the sad state of affairs in India. The said report throws light on various human rights violations such as police brutality, torture and excess custodial and encounters deaths, horrible conditions in prison and detention centres, arbitrary arrests and unlawful detention, denial of fair public trial”, the PIL filed through Advocate Manoj V George stated.