New Delhi, Feb. 17: The violation of human rights has increased multifold in India over the decades because of the silence of the people who were not affected, said Justice (Retd.) Rajendra Sachar on Saturday while addressing the weekly Public Program at the headquarters of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind.
In his 30-minute long speech, Justice Sachar talked in details about the violation of human rights in the country referring to various laws including TADA, POTA and current UAPA. However, he stressed that people should not remain silent when they see violation of rights of others.
Quoting Islamic teaching, Justice Sachar said that in the eye of Allah, a person who tolerates injustice is as much sinner as the one who is doing injustice. He said TADA was brought by Congress particularly to crush separatism in Punjab, but thousands of innocents were arrested under the law. As many as 15000 people were arrested under TADA but not even one percent was conviction. He said when TADA came people from other parts of the country did not raise voice thinking the law was for Punjab. But the law was followed by more stringent laws like POTA and then UAPA.
TADA was brought by Congress. When BJP came it brought POTA and removed TADA. Though both had provisions that violated human rights. Then before the 2004 elections, Congress said if it came to power it would remove POTA. When it came to power it did remove POTA and brought more stringent law in the form of UAPA. This law gave a big shock to human rights. Earlier if government wanted to declare any group or association as illegal it would send the mater to a three-judge bench of high court and the bench would take the final decision. But UAPA changed that law. Now a government appointed committee takes the decision. This was a big shock to human rights, said Justice Sachar. Now the situation is such that the police are arresting any and putting charge of sedition against him.
Justice Sachar said that governments and their agencies are violating human rights of citizens as the protest against them is not strong and it has not taken the shape of a public movement, he said. Answering to a question he commented that as a policy I am against the death penalty to anyone but in case of Afzal Guru he was denied of fair Trial and many of his basic Human Rights were violated. It is surprising and shocking that the Supreme Court in Afzal Guru’s case gave death penalty to satisfy the “collective conscience” despite of having no direct evidence.
The prominent Human Right activist and Renowned Supreme court Advocate Mr. ND Pancholi also addressed the gathering.The program was presided over by General Secretary of Jamaat Mr. Nusrat Ali while Mr. Mohammad Salim Engineer, National Secretary for Public Relations anchored the program.