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One Day after Concert and Candle Light Action, NHRC Recommends that Nitin Chinien's Aggressors be Prosecuted

01.08.2007

1 day after concert and candlelight action,NHRC recommends that Nitin Chinien's aggressors be prosecuted.

Today, Nitin Chinien received a letter from the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) that had opened up an enquiry on his aggression by MCIT police officers on the 13th of June this year. The letter states that the NHRC "has referred the matter to the Director of Public Prosecution as it appears that an offence may have been committed". What this means is that after holding an official enquiry, the NHRC believes Nitin Chinien's version, and is recommending that his aggressors be prosecuted.

Nitin Chinien has already rung up the Commission to ask for a detailed report on his case as the letter does not make it clear what "offence" the Commission thinks has taken place, and who it appears, has made the "offence". Nitin Chinien stated to them quite rightly that he believes this unjust. A Commission staff officer, Mr. Nirmal has asked Nitin Chinien to request this report in writing to the Commission.

The NHRC procedure, under the "Protection of Human Rights Act" is to send its detailed report on each case to the Minister of Justice and Human Rights, and to send a one-sentence letter to the complainant to inform him/her of what "action" has been taken.

There have been two notable exceptions. The first one is when Mr. Rajesh Ramlogun died in police custody in January 2006, the detailed NHRC report found its way into a newspaper. The conclusion of the NHRC in this case was weaker than that of the judicial enquiry that clearly concluded "foul play".

The second one is the NHRC report on attorney and Justice association member Jean-Claude Bibi's case: he suffered verbal violence, abuse and threats from officers while he was trying to perform his professional duty of upholding his client's human rights in the very same MCIT office where Nitin Chinien was aggressed. This report found its way into the press as well, and was different from the letter from the NHRC that Mr. Jean-Claude Bibi received

At the time, Lalit wrote to members of the NHRC calling on them either to urgently prepare and publish draft amendments to overhaul the NHRC so that it becomes more effective against police violence and torture rather than an instrument used to cover-up police violence or else, to resign. (See News Section for a copy of the letter).