Human rights not for a few, says SC

A Bench of Justices G S Singhvi and S J Mukhopadhya felt human rights violation could not be the prerogative of a few privileged as it was as much available to other marginalised sections of the society and victims of violence.

   “What about the psyche of the victims of violence? So many security people gave up their lives in defending Parliament, the Bench comprising the both justices argued on the matter of human rights.

Braves forgotten
“Those brave people have been forgotten in a day. In this case too, nine people were killed and 29 injured. Has any one found out about their feelings? What about their human rights?” the Bench said.

1993 blasts hearing
The apex court made the remarks while dealing with the appeal filed by Punjab terrorist Devender Pal Singh Bhullar, who was awarded death penalty for triggering a bomb blast here in September 1993 killing nine people, challenging the government's eight-year delay in dealing with his mercy petition.

Senior counsel K T S Tulsi, appearing for Bhullar, argued that the delay in dealing with the mercy petition pending since 2003 amounted to “dehumanising” and “cruelty” to the convict, which prompted the court’s remarks.

Global opinion
When the counsel cited instances of growing global opinion against death penalty and other social problems, the bench remarked: “yes, we are a benign nation. Many die of hunger. Farmers have committed suicides. What about their human rights?”
The apex court asked the counsel whether delay by the government in deciding the mercy petition could be a ground for commuting the death penalty.

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