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April 23 @ 7:00 am - 11:30 pm


The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) recently convened a meeting involving all seven national commissions to address the protection of vulnerable sections’ rights. 

The seven bodies include the National Commission for Women (NCW), National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC), National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST), National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR), National Commission for Minorities (NCM), National Commission for Backward Classes (NCBC), and Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities. 

Outcomes of the Joint Meeting: 

Joint Strategies for Effective Implementation: 

  • Emphasis on collaboration among all seven national commissions to formulate joint strategies for implementing existing legislations and schemes. 
  • Importance highlighted on learning from each other’s experiences to ensure equality and dignity for vulnerable communities. 

Mechanical Cleaning of Septic Tanks: 

  • NHRC stressed the significance of mechanically cleaning septic tanks and urged states and local bodies to adhere to NHRC’s advisory on this matter. 

Collaboration for Research: 

  • Advocated collaboration among commissions to prevent duplication of research efforts. 
  • Highlighted common research subjects between NHRC and NCW, emphasizing compatibility of state provisions for uniformity in women’s property rights. 

Challenges in Education and Technology: 

  • Discussion on ensuring equitable benefits of new education policy and emerging technology for marginalized communities. 
  • Emphasis on the need for compassion and sensitivity alongside legal measures for mindset change. 

Rights of Children: 

  • NCPCR highlighted proactive measures for child rights, including monitoring portals, rehabilitating orphan children, and issuing guidelines for child protection. 
  • Emphasized enhanced compensation under National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) and state obligation in addressing child rights violations. 

Challenges Faced by Persons with Disabilities: 

  • Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities discussed challenges faced by ‘divyangjan’, including issues accessing online services such as captcha codes. 

Scope for Cooperation and Structured Approach: 

  • Agreement on advocating enhanced cooperation among commissions and adopting a structured approach for safeguarding societal rights. 
  • Utilization of the ‘HRCNet portal’ for synergy and efficiency in handling complaints. 

Overview of NHRC: 

  • About: NHRC ensures protection of rights related to life, liberty, equality, and dignity, enshrined in the Indian Constitution and international covenants. 
  • Establishment: Formed on October 12, 1993, under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993, in line with the Paris Principles. 
  • Composition: Consists of a chairperson, five full-time members, and seven deemed members, including former judges and legal experts. 
  • Appointment and Tenure: Appointed by the President based on recommendations from a six-member committee, serving a three-year term or until reaching the age of 70. 
  • Role and Function: Empowered with civil court-like powers for investigations, but its recommendations are primarily recommendatory in nature. 

Shortcomings in Functioning of NHRC: 

  • Non-Binding Recommendations: NHRC’s recommendations lack legal enforcement, limiting its influence. 
  • Inability to Punish Violators: NHRC lacks punitive powers, hindering direct action against violators. 
  • Limited Role in Armed Forces Cases: Jurisdictional restrictions in cases involving armed forces diminish comprehensive accountability. 
  • Time Limitations for Historical Cases: Inability to address violations reported after one year affects historical grievances. 
  • Resource Constraints: NHRC faces resource shortages, impacting efficiency in investigations and awareness campaigns. 
  • Lack of Independence: Dependence on government appointments raises concerns about independence and credibility. 
  • Need for Proactive Interventions: Reactive responses limit NHRC’s impact; proactive measures could enhance effectiveness. 

Steps to Strengthen NHRC’s Working: 

  • Improve Scope and Effectiveness: Expand NHRC’s mandate to address emerging human rights challenges such as AI and climate change effectively. 
  • Grant Enforcement Powers: Empower NHRC with punitive powers to enforce recommendations, enhancing accountability. 
  • Composition Reforms: Appoint members from diverse backgrounds to ensure holistic perspectives and independence. 
  • Developing an Independent Cadre: Establish an independent cadre with expertise in human rights issues to address resource constraints. 
  • Strengthen State Human Rights Commissions: Support state commissions with collaboration, capacity building, and knowledge sharing. 
  • Advocacy and Public Awareness: Engage in proactive advocacy and education to empower citizens about their rights. 
  • International Cooperation: Collaborate with international human rights bodies to learn from global practices and adopt relevant strategies. 

Mains Question: 

  1. “Discuss the significance of collaborative efforts among national commissions in protecting the rights of vulnerable sections, citing examples from the recent joint meeting convened by NHRC.” (150 WORDS)


April 23
7:00 am - 11:30 pm
Event Category:
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