CURTAIN RAISER: NHRC to hold Open Hearing and Camp Sitting at Port Blair from 19th -20th January, 2017 (17.01.2017)

New Delhi, 17th January,

The National Human Rights Commission is organising an 'Open Hearing' of complaints on the problems and the grievances of the Schedules Castes and Scheduled Tribes at Port Blair, Andaman & Nicobar Islands on the 19th and 20th January, 2017. Justice Shri H.L. Dattu, Chairperson, NHRC will inaugurate it at Tagore Government College of Education, Port Blair at 10.00 AM on 19th January, 2017.

Post inauguration, the Commission will take up 10 cases in the Full Commission sitting to be presided over by Justice Dattu and Members, Justice Shri D. Murugesan and Shri S.C. Sinha. These cases include matters relating to Atrocities on Scheduled Castes and other oppressed sections of society. The authorities concerned have been asked to remain present at the time of hearing of these cases.

After the Full Commission sitting, a meeting on human rights of the Union Territory will be held with the NGOs at Secretariat, Port Blair between 02.00 PM and 03.00 PM. Thereafter, the Commission will hold discussions with the Chief Secretary, DGP, and other senior civil, police and jail officers on the issues raised by the NGOs at the same venue from 03.00 PM to 04.00 PM. The issues of health, educational infra-structure, problems of Jarwa community and other tribal issues are also likely to be taken up during discussion with senior officers of the State Government.

Later on, the NHRC Chairperson and Members would brief media about the outcome of the Open Hearing and related programmes at Secretariat, Port Blair at 04.00 PM on 19th January, 2017.

On the second day on the 20th January, 2017, the delegation of the Commission will visit Nicobar Islands to meet the inhabitants of the island and officers of the Union Territory.

The aim of the series of Open Hearings/Camp Sittings in different States and Union Territories is to hear the problems and grievances of SCs/STs, who have a complaint of atrocity committed by a public servant or of negligence by a public servant in prevention of atrocity. Public notices are published in newspapers inviting complaints for public hearing.

So far, such Open Hearings have been held in the States of Bihar, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Kerala and at Chandigarh for the States of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and UT of Chandigarh, Jharkhand, UT of Puducherry and Odisha. The Commission also held an Open Hearing in its office at Manav Adhikar Bhawan, New Delhi to hear complaints received from Meerut region of Uttar Pradesh. Besides, the Commission also organized one Regional Public Hearing on Right to Health Care in collaboration with the Jan Swasthya Abhiyan (JSA) at Mumbai on 6th-7th January, 2016 for the States of Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Goa and Union Territories of Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli.

In the past, the NHRC has also organised its Camp Sittings in the States of Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Bengaluru (for four southern States of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu), Bihar, Gujarat, Assam, Meghalaya, Chhattisgarh, Manipur, Madhya Pradesh, Odisha, Chandigarh (for the States of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and UT of Chandigarh) and Hyderabad for the States of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.