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"State Is Vicariously Liable": NHRC Recommends Payment Of Rs.1Lakh By Home Ministry To Victims Of Custodial Torture By Delhi Police

Srishti Ojha
23 Feb 2021 2:42 PM GMT
State Is Vicariously Liable: NHRC Recommends Payment Of Rs.1Lakh By Home Ministry To Victims Of  Custodial Torture By Delhi Police
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The National Human Rights Commission has recommended payment of Rs. 1 lakh each to the two victims in a 2019 case of custodial torture by Delhi Police.

According to the Commission the State is vicariously liable for the action of police officials and the victims are entitled for compensation. While recommending that the Union Ministry of Home Affairs pays one lakh to the victims, the Commission has also called for the report of departmental action taken against the six erring police official, who are facing trial.

Six police officials including a SHO, ASI, HC, HV, and two Constables are currently facing trial before the court of Additional Sessions Judge, Rohini in Delhi.
The Commission's recommendation has come after its decision to dismiss Delhi Police's plea that no departmental action can be taken against the concerned police personnel as the matter is subjudice. According to the Commission this plea taken by Delhi Police in reply to its show cause notice is fallacious, unsatisfactory and does not inspire confidence. The material on record prima-facie establishes that that the complainant and his nephew were given third degree torture, and were assaulted by the police personnel. Therefore considering the circumstances, the Commission recommended payment of Rs. 1 lakh to the two victims of police torture, as per the Section 18 (a) (i) of Protection of Human Rights Act.
After a complaint was made by the victim on 28th August 2019, alleging torture by police officials of Adarsh Nagar Police Station, Delhi, a case was registered by the Commission. The victim had complained that his nephew was picked up by the police officials and when he went to enquire about him, he was also detained and given third degree torture along with his nephew. The complainant alleged that his nephew was falsely implicated in a criminal case of Arms Act.
After notices were issued by the Commission, the DCP Crime Headquarters of Delhi Police had submitted a report informing the Commission that an FIR was registered on the complainant's complaint on 1st September 2019. The Commission, on the basis of this report, found that a criminal action had been initiated against the three officials, and a charge-sheet had been submitted against them before the court of law.
The Commission has therefore held that since the police officials failed to act as responsible public servants, therefore, departmental proceedings against them should also be initiated, and they should be punished accordingly.


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