Police Complaint Authority remains a non-starter

Police Complaint Authority remains a non-starter

An authority constituted by the State government to address complaints of police atrocity remains a non-starter.

The State government constituted a Police Complaint Authority under the Karnataka Police Act following a direction by the Supreme Court.

A gazette notification in this regard was issued in early 2012. Justice R J Babu, a retired High Court judge was appointed as the chairperson while a city-based human rights activist, Adarsh G K was recommended as a citizen-member of the authority.

However, the authority tasked with acting on complaints against police officials of above the rank of deputy superintendent of police, appears to have remained only on paper.
Except the gazette notification, the Authority neither has an office nor any details of its functioning are available.

No information

“We are clueless about this authority. We have no information on its office and whether any cases have been registered there,” said Mathew Philip, Director, South India Cell for Human Rights Monitoring.

Philip and Kolladi Balakrishna Rai of Mangalore were appointed as members of the authority on the recommendation of the State Human Rights Commission.
Interestingly, neither of members are aware of their selection process and also that of the Citizen member.

Notification withdrawal

Top officials from the Home Department, when contacted, said discussions were on with the Law Department on withdrawing the notification.

“Earlier, it was a direction from the Supreme Court. Now, the authority has become a statutory body. We are now contemplating whether to issue a fresh notification after we get a panel names from the High Court,” a source in the Home Department. Justice R J Babu, when contacted, refused to comment.

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