Human Rights

Basic and inalienable rights inherent in all the individuals irrespective of caste, sex creed, religion sex and nationality. Mechanism required to protect human right is NHRC: The setting of institution is one of the effective means to perform various functions relating to implementation of Human Right. Such an institution raised human rights awareness through education, training, and conduct impartial investigation.


  • The first human rights group in the country, the Civil Liberties Union was formed by Jawaharlal Nehru and some of his colleagues in the early 1930s with the specific objective of providing legal aid to nationalists accused of sedition against the colonial authorities. However, this effort was short lived.
  • Thus, it was not until the late 1960s that the real emergence of human rights groups took place. This was triggered off when both the privileged social classes and the government systematically cracked down on groups fighting for the rights of traditionally oppressed peoples, landless labour, marginal and small peasants, the unorganized working class and their mobilisers and supporters among the articulate and conscientious were formed during this period. Notable amongst these were the Association for the Protection of Democratic Rights (APDR) in West Bengal, the Andhra Pradesh Civil Liberties Committee (APCLC) and, somewhat later, the Association for Democratic Rights (AFDR) in Punjab.
  • However, it was only after Jayaprakash Narayan launched a major agitation against the growing authoritarianism of Mrs. Gandhi that a large number of prominent liberals and humanists came together with radicals in 1975 to form the first (and only) national human rights organisation, the People’s Union for Civil Liberties and Democratic Rights (PUCLDR).
  • Even after the defeat of Mrs. Gandhi at the polls in 1977, these civil rights activists maintained a relatively low profile for almost two years. This was primarily due to a widely shared perception among lawyers and academics that the new government would be more amenable to dialogue and corrective action.
  • It was in October 1980, after the fall of the Janata government and the return of Mrs. Gandhi to power, that a major National Convention took place in Delhi which led to the split of the PUCLDR into two organizations – a Delhi based PUDR and a national PUCL.
  • Today, there are wide range of organizations specifically concerned with issues of civil liberties and democratic rights. It is important to mention here that there are in India thousands of groups and movements struggling for distributive justice. There are also advocacy and support groups. There have been five major activities taken up by these organisations:
    • Fact-finding missions and investigations
    • Public litigation
    • Citizen awareness programmes
    • Campaigns
    • The production of supportive literature for independent movements and organisations.
  • These groups have successfully raised three kinds of issues:
    • Direct or indirect violations by the state (police lawlessness, including torture and murders of opponents through fake “encounters,” repressive legislation, political manipulation and terror by mafia groups, etc).
    • Denial in practice of legally stipulated rights as well as the inability of government institutions to perform their functions.
    • Structural constraints which restrict realisation of rights, e.g., violence in the family, landlord’s private armies, the continuing colonization of tribals, etc
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