Asian Centre for Human Rights

Dedicated to promotion and protection of human rights in Asia

INFO BY COUNTRY / INDIA / ANNUAL REPORT / CHATTISGARH

CHATTISGARH

I. Overview

Ruled by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Chhattisgarh witnessed sharp increase of custodial deaths. There were reports of 11 deaths in police lock up during June-December 2004. On 24 November 2004, Home Minister Brijmohan Agrawal justified the custodial deaths by stating that 13 custodial deaths had taken place during the Congress rule; but the administration took little action.

The radical Left-wing armed opposition group, also called Naxalites, are reportedly active in eight districts out of total sixteen districts, mainly in the tribal areas.  Many tribals have been allegedly arrested under false cases as Naxalites.

While violence against women has been rampant, atrocities against the Dalits by the upper caste Hindus continued unabated.

The condition of jails in the state remained deplorable. K.A. Jacob, Chairman of the State Human Rights Commission of Chhattisgarh admitted unbearable and sub-human condition of Chhattisgarh jails, which were overcrowded and infested with diseases like tuberculosis.