Message of NHRC Chairperson, Mr. Justice H.L. Dattu on the 27th Foundation Day of the Commission. (12.10.2020)
New Delhi: 12th October, 2020
“Today on 12th October, the National Human Rights Commission, NHRC, India has completed 27 years of its remarkable journey in the promotion and protection of human rights. It is on this day in 1993, the NHRC was set up under the Protection of Human Rights Act. The Foundation Day of any institution is to remind itself of its mandate and plan activities towards fulfillment of this mandate. Likewise, the Foundation Day of the Commission is an important day for NHRC family to self-introspect and to continue with our commitment towards promotion and protection of human rights with even greater vigour in future.
This year, COVID 19 pandemic has posed unprecedented challenges at every front of life due to which, we are not organizing formal function to mark the occasion. However, we hope and pray that situation improves, and we are able to celebrate it along with International Human Rights Day on 10th December.
The NHRC India, since its inception on 12th October 1993, has consistently endeavoured to broaden the ambit of human rights with the challenges of changing times for the protection of the civil and political rights of the people including safeguarding their economic, social, and cultural rights.
This year has been very tough globally for humanity due to COVID-19 pandemic. We have been trying to cope with the related challenges in line with the spirit of COVID warriors to face the adversity despite the fact that some of NHRC employees were also impacted by the pandemic.
During the year from 01.10.2019 to 30.09.2020, the Commission registered 73,729 (Seventy three thousand seven hundred twenty nine) complaints. These included 32,876 (thirty two thousand eight hundred seventy six) complaints registered during 01.04.2020 to 30.09.2020, while various parts of the country were impacted by COVID-19 pandemic. These also included 29 suo moto cases of human rights violation. Besides, the Supreme Court of India allowed NHRC intervention in its suo moto petition on the issues of migrant labourers. Despite constraints, the Commission managed to hold discussions through web mode with various experts to come out with various COVID-19 Advisories sent to Government. These included COVID-19 advisories on Women, Children and Health etc.
We also managed to organize very successfully 15 days short term internship programmes every month through web mode and associated with it a number of senior officers and experts from India and abroad to address the interns on various issues of human rights. We also got stupendous response to invitation of Expression of Interest for a record number of over 300 research projects. It is heartening to know that the response to NHRC Short Film Competition on Human Rights this year is also very encouraging. Our efforts to expand human rights awareness through the wide networks of NSS, NYKS, NCC and Red Cross is also taking a firm shape.
The Commission also managed to launch its Twitter handle and got official status to it which resulted in expanding its outreach to people. We also shifted to e-office for safe, transparent and timely processing of various matters including disposal of complaints.
The NHRC, India, which continues to retain its “A” Accreditation with Global Alliance for National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI) under the UN Aegis, also retained the Membership of Governance Committee of Asia Pacific Forum (APF).
The Commission acknowledges the support of all stakeholders including among Centre and State, Experts, Civil Societies, NGOs, Media in its endeavour towards the protection and promotion of human rights. On this day, I also extend my gratitude towards the Members, senior officers and staff of the Commission. I am confident that in future we will continue to work with the same team spirit.