• Uttar Pradesh

    1. Overview.. 1
    2. Human rights violations by the security forces. 2
    3. Violence against women. 3
    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits. 3
    5. Judiciary and administration of justice. 4
    6. Violations of the rights of the child. 5

    1. Overview

    Ruled by Samajwadi Party, Uttar Pradesh remained lawless and witnessed widespread human rights violations. As per state police figures, a total of 1,18,195 cases were registered under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) in 2006 as against 1,17,748 in 2005. These included 5,482 murders, 3,420 riots, 109 kidnapping for ransom, 1,795 dowry deaths and 1,161 rapes, among others. In addition to the crimes registered under IPC, 411 cases were registered under the National Security Act, 2,177 under the Gangster Act, 11,816 under the Goonda Act, 39,184 cases under the Arms Act, among others.[1]

    The security forces especially the State Police were responsible for violations of the right to life through torture, indiscriminate use of firearms and alleged fake encounters. Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) documented two cases of custodial death in 2006.

    The Naxalites were active in three districts of Sonebhadra, Chandauli and Mirzapur. A special battalion ‘the new Indian Reserve Battalion' of the Provincial Arms Constabulary, comprising local youth of these Naxalite-affected districts was being raised to tackle the Naxalite problem in the State.[2]

    The condition of the Dalits remained deplorable. Dalits women continued to be highly prone to violence perpetrated by upper caste people. Apart from killings and rapes, they were meted out barbaric treatment such as chopping off arm and nose.

    Prison conditions were deplorable and prisoners were often denied timely treatment. In early January 2006, Subodh Shukla, an inmate of Lucknow District Jail, died of jaundice due to the non-availability of timely treatment. In 2005, at least twenty inmates died at Lucknow Jail due to non availability of timely treatment.[3] However, politically influential or rich inmates allegedly enjoyed lavish homely comforts in the jail hospital.[4]

    The condition of the children was worst in the State. Children were employed in hazardous industries. Even children staying in orphanages were sexually exploited.

    2. Human rights violations by the security forces

    Human rights violations including violation of the right to life through alleged fake encounters, torture and indiscriminate use of fire-arms were widespread. Those who were killed in custody after arrest included Chhote Jatav, Bahujan Samaj Party worker, at the Bahadurgarh police custody on the night of 4 February 2006[5] Satish, BJP worker, who was allegedly beaten to death at Didauli Kotwali in Moradabad on charges of power theft on 25 March 2006;[6] Rajiv Kapoor, resident of Delhi, who allegedly committed suicide by setting himself ablaze with sewing machine oil in the custody of Noida's Sector 39 police station on the night of 24 August 2006;[7] Sonu, son of Dalveer, a resident of Hazratpur under Khurja police station, who allegedly committed suicide from a window grill of the toilet attached to his cell after being arrested for interrogation at Sector 20 police station in Noida on the night of 1 September 2006[8] and Rajvir who allegedly committed suicide by hanging in the toilet of the Kanth police station in Shahjahanpur district on 21 September 2006.[9]

    There were also allegations of fake encounters. On the night of 24 May 2006, Sohanveer was killed by police in an alleged fake encounter at Mawana in Meerut district. The police claimed that the youth was a hardcore criminal.[10]

    In April 2006, the Supreme Court taking cognizance on a letter written by co-accused Shailendra alias Shailee on the killing of one Brahmpal, a resident of Ramala under Baghpat in an stage managed encounter in December 2005 sought a detailed enquiry report from the Uttar Pradesh Police to be filed in the court.[11]

    In November 2006, a fast-track court in Basti sentenced 17 policemen including then Station House Officers of the Dudhara and Mehndawal police stations, P.K. Rai and Ram Bishun Yadav respectively, to life imprisonment on the charge of killing 11 innocent persons in a fake encounter in Karhana village of Basti district on the night of 28-29 July 1986.[12]

    Torture continued to take place in Uttar Pradesh. On 12 February 2006, one Tillu of the Nandgram area was seriously injured following torture by the police. Later the victim was admitted to the Yashoda Hospital in critical condition.[13]

    3. Violence against women

    Uttar Pradesh continued to witness increase of violence against women in 2006. According to State Police Department Records, a total of 14,925 crimes against women were registered in 2006 against the total of 12,897 in 2005. These included 1,795 dowry deaths, 1,161 rapes, 2,295 kidnapping, among others.[14]

    On 24 April 2006, a woman was gang raped by three persons identified as Billu, Pali and Lala when the victim was returning home through the fields at Madhpuri village under Badhapur police circle in Bijnor district. The victim and her husband went to the Badhapur police station to lodge a complaint but the police allegedly refused to register their complaint. When the victims threatened to approach senior police officials, the police advised them to approach the panchayat. The next day the village panchayat ordered the victim to hit the three accused five times each with her slippers as punishment.[15]

    There were also reports of honour killings. On the night of 5 February 2006, 16-year-old Soni  was killed along with her lover Sharafat by her family members who opposed the relationship at Akbarpur village in Behsuma.[16]

    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits

    The conditions of the Dalits remained deplorable in Uttar Pradesh. According to State Police records, a total of 4,104 crimes against the Scheduled Castes (SCs) and Scheduled Tribes (STs) were registered during 2006. These included 312 murders, 302 grievous hurt, 212 rapes, 50 arsons, 1,320 cases under the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. In 2005 and 2004, a total of  3,211 and 2,690 cases of atrocities against the SCs/STs respectively were registered.[17] 

    On 12 August 2006, Dulichand, a Dalit, was killed by about six upper caste men belonging to Thakur community while he was on his way to answer the call of nature at Alauda Jagir village in Greater Noida.[18]

    Dalit women were more prone to abuses including inhuman torture, killing, rape, etc by the upper castes.  On 12 January 2006, a Dalit woman identified as Naina Devi, wife of Rati Ram, was burnt to death by four landlords at Danagarh village in Bulandshahr. The police registered a case against the accused under SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.[19]

    The Dalit women were meted out inhuman torture. On 12 February 2006, four upper caste men including one Veeresh Yadav chopped off an arm of 15-year-old Dalit girl named Anju when she resisted their attempt to rape her in the fields near Achalda village in Auraiya district. The police initially refused to register her complaint.[20]

    On 23 November 2006, the nose of Dalit woman was reportedly chopped off by landlord Randhir and his son Sanjiv while she was cutting grass in their field at Noarottampur village in Muzaffarnagar on the charge of defiling their land.[21]

    5. Judiciary and administration of justice

    Judiciary was plagued by shortage of judges and judicial delay. By the end of December 2006, there were nine vacancies in the Allahabad High Court, while there were 467 vacancies in the District and Subordinate Courts as on 30 September 2006. The total number of 8,036,76 cases were pending with the Allahabad High Court and a whopping 46,66,667 were pending with the District and Subordinate Courts as on 30 September 2006.[22]

    There were several instances of judicial delay and gross negligence by the administration. On 8 February 2006, one Rajaram of Tarabganj in Gonda district was released on a personal bail bond after spending 35 years in Faizabad jail and Varanasi mental hospital without in a petty theft case in 1970.[23]

    On 13 February 2006, the Supreme Court granted bail to 70-year old Jagjivan Ram Yadav who had been languishing in Faizabad jail for the last 38 years without any trial.[24]

    On 19 February 2006, Shankar Dayal Singh, a resident of Maswasi village in Unnao district, was released after spending over 44 years in jail without any trial as he was declared mentally unstable.[25]

    In a similar case, an undertrial Devi Prasad, resident of Gazipur township in Fatehpur district, had been lodged in Varanasi jail for over 33 years as of March 2006 with both the complainant and witnesses in the case having passed away. The long ordeal left him mentally and physically unfit as he even failed to recognize his brother Pitambar when he went to the jail to meet him.[26]  

    6. Violations of the rights of the child

    Child labour was rampant in Uttar Pradesh. The Moradabad brassware industry continued to exploit children despite a ban. There were around 18,000 children working in the furnaces and another 20,000 - 25,000 who were involved in casting and scrapping processes of the brassware industry. The children were subjected to fumes and smokes which caused respiratory diseases and tuberclosis. However, they were paid only between Rs 7 and Rs 15 per day.[27]

    Children were sexually abused. Those living at orphanages were often victimised. On 1 December 2006, the Supreme Court sought an immediate response from the National Commission for Women, NHRC and the District Magistrate after a private TV channel a day earlier revealed sexual exploitation of about 65 girls, most of them aged five or six years, and some mentally challenged, in the Swami Bal Nath Ashram at Ghaziabad. The district authority reportedly did not initiate any action despite that the matter was brought to its notice.[28] 

    [1]. Crime Statistics, Uttar Pradesh Police department

    [2]. Special battalion to check naxals, The Asian Age, 2 July 2006

    [3]. Ill-fated in Lucknow Jail, The Pioneer, 7 January 2006

    [4]. Ill-fated in Lucknow Jail, The Pioneer, 7 January 2006 

    [5]. Residents jam road over custodial death, The Pioneer, 6 February 2006

    [6]. Five cops suspended for custodial death of BJP worker, The Kashmir Times, 27 March 2006

    [7]. Suicide, in a police station, The Times of India, 26 August 2006 

    [8]. Another death in police custody in Noida, The Sunday Tribune, 3 September 2006

    [9]. Nine cops suspended for custodial death, The Hindu, 23 September 2006 

    [10]. Encounter killing takes an ugly turn in Meerut, The Pioneer, 26 May 2006 

    [11]. SC seeks report on encounter killing in UP, The Pioneer, 19 April 2006

    [12]. 17 policemen get life term for fake killings, The Hindu, 26 November 2006 

    [13]. Torture triggers violence in Ghaziabad, The Times of India, 14 February 2006 

    [14]. Crime statistics, Uttar Pradesh Police department

    [15]. Panchayat 'justice': Five slaps for rape, The Deccan Chronicle, 28 April 2006 

    [16]. Honour killing in Meerut: 2 dead, The Pioneer, 8 February 2006 

    [17]. Crime Statistics, Uttar Pradesh Police department

    [18]. Tension prevails in Gt Noida village as Dalit shot dead, The Tribune, 14 August 2006

    [19]. Landlords burn Dalit woman to death, The Pioneer, 16 January 2006 

    [20]. Frustrated rapists chop off Dalit girl's arm, The Shillong Times, 14 February 2006 

    [21]. Dalit woman's nose chopped off, The Asian Age, 25 November 2006

    [22]. Court News, October-December 2006, Supreme Court of India

    [23]. After 35 yrs in jail, this man can't find his village, The Indian Express, 11 February 2006 

    [24]. SC grants bail to Faizabad jail undertrial, The Times of India, 13 February 2006 

    [25]. Return of the living dead, The Times of India, 25 February 2006

    [26]. Undertrial in jail for 33 years, The Hindu, 19 March 2006 

    [27]. How UP top brass exploits children, http://www.ibnlive.com/news/rs-15-per-day-the-cost-of-exploiting-kids-in-india/25686-3.html

    [28]. Court seeks NHRC response, The Asian Age, 6 December 2006 

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