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  • Uttar Pradesh

    1. Overview. 1
    2. Human rights violations by the security forces 2
    a. Violation of the right to life. 2
    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture. 3
    3. Violence against women. 4
    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits 4
    5. Violations of the prisoners' rights 5


    1. Overview

    Ruled by Samajwadi Party, Uttar Pradesh witnessed widespread violations of human rights in 2005. Asian Centre for Human Rights documented at least three cases of political killings: Member of Legislative Assembly (MLA) of Bahujan Samaj Party, Raju Pal who was killed by unidentified gunmen in Allahabad on 25 January 2005;[1] former Member of Parliament of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Laxmi Narayan Tripathi who was shot dead by unidentified men at his home at Vikasnagar in Aliganj on 19 June 2005[2] and BJP MLA Krishnanand Rai who was killed with six others by unidentified gunmen in an ambush at Basania village under Bhanwarkol police station in Ghazipur district.[3]

    The law enforcement personnel were responsible for widespread violation of human rights in Uttar Pradesh including arbitrary deprivation of life in alleged encounters, deaths in custody and indiscriminate use of firearms. According to National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Government of India, eight persons died in custody and 42 civilians died in police firing during 2005.[4] Besides, at least 87 persons were killed in alleged encounters between January and March 2005 alone, while the figure stood at 238 in 2004 and 214 in 2003.[5]

    Violence against women including rape, kidnapping and dowry deaths were rampant in Uttar Pradesh. The National Crime Records Bureau recorded 1,217 cases of rape, 2,256 cases of kidnapping/abduction and 1,564 cases of dowry deaths during 2005.[6] Asian Centre for Human Rights documented one of the worst cases of violence against women committed by the police. On 23 September 2005, Rama Shankar Yadav, a constable posted at the Transport Nagar police station in Gorakhpur, allegedly set on fire a teenaged girl identified as Poonam, daughter of Radhey Shyam, after failing to molest her. The girl succumbed to her burn injuries on the way to hospital. A case under Sections 376, 511 and 302 of the Indian Penal Code was registered with the Cantonment police station.[7]

    There was no improvement of the conditions of the Dalits. They continued to face violence for expressing their political freedom. On the night of 21 October 2005, a Dalit woman identified as Prabhavati Devi, contesting local elections on a Bahujan Samaj Party ticket was reportedly set ablaze by her rivals for refusing to pull out from the fray in Mujehra Khurd village in Mirzapur district of Uttar Pradesh.[8] She succumbed to her over 90 per cent burn injuries on 5 September 2005 in the district hospital. The police have failed to arrest the accused.[9]

    The conditions of prisons remained deplorable due to overcrowding. There were more than 2,200 prisoners housed at Dasna jail against the capacity of 720 as of May 2005.[10]

    Many prisoners allegedly died due to torture and in some cases inordinate delay in providing medical care proved fatal. In December 2005, the National Human Rights Commission, while confirming the death of an undertrial prisoner identified as Babu Lal due to inordinate delay in taking him to the hospital by the jail administration of Banda District Jail in November 2000, held that technical considerations for shifting a patient to the hospital cannot outweigh the right to life of the patient.[11]

    2. Human rights violations by the security forces

    a. Violation of the right to life

    According to the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), 5,283 complaint cases were received during 2005. Out of these, 1,378 were registered and the rest were declared false. While 1,324 cases were sent for regular departmental actions and 54 cases were sent for trial or filing chargesheet. Departmental inquiries were instituted in 1,363 cases, magisterial inquiries were instituted in 13 cases and judicial inquiries were instituted in two cases. Disciplinary actions were initiated against 1,787 police personnel, of these, 50 were removed/dismissed, major punishment was awarded to 244 personnel and minor punishment was awarded to 1,309 police personnel.[12]

    According to NCRB, 42 civilians were killed in police firing in Uttar Pradesh during 2005.[13]

    Human rights violations including arbitrary deprivation of the right to life through alleged encounters, custodial torture and indiscriminate use of fire-arms were perpetrated. Those who were killed in custody included school teacher Balwan who was tortured to dead in the custody of Baraut police station in Baghpat district after being arrested on 11 May 2005 during a raid at his house at Madhuban Colony;[14] Idris, relative of an Uttar Pradesh minister for Haj, who was beaten to death after being summoned by Station House Office Gajendra Singh of Bhavanpur police station in Meerut district for interrogation on 21 May 2005[15] and Rashid, Block Development Committee member of Rahimabad who was tortured to death by police and later hung from a tree near a graveyard under Malihabad police station to give the impression of suicide on 3 December 2005 after being arrested on 26 November 2005.[16]

    Some other cases of deprivation of the right to life documented by Asian Centre for Human Rights in 2005 included six persons including a woman who were run over by an express train after some army personnel allegedly pushed passengers out of a train compartment during a scuffle at Shikohabad railway station in Firozabad district on 23 January 2005;[17] Mohit Gupta, a student of BNSD Inter College, Kanpur, who was killed in an alleged crossfire between the police of Gwaltoli police station and dreaded gangster Vinod Katani at the Upika in Kanpur on 12 February 2005;[18] Yaseen alias Vicky who was killed when police opened fire at a mob in Baradari police circle in Bareilly on 22 April 2005;[19] and Umed Sharma and a 14-year-old boy Rakesh who were killed when the Railway Protection personnel opened fire at a mob over a ticket-row at the Dadri railway station near Noida on 10 June 2005.[20]

    In a rarest case, in December 2005, the Uttar Pradesh government announced a compensation of Rs five lakh to the families of three junk dealers Aasif, Merherban and Arshad of Nai Abadi who were killed in police custody during interrogation on 26 October 2004. Seven policemen including Station House Officer, Alok Sharma of Kasna police station in Greater Noida were charged for the killing.[21]

    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture

    Torture by police personnel was common. On 10 March 2005, a car driver Deepak Sharma was beaten up by the traffic policemen including Inspector Deepak Singh, Assistant Sub-Inspector Mahesh Chand in Ghaziabad which resulted in rapture of one of his kidneys.[22] On 21 December 2005, the Uttar Pradesh government suspended four police officials, ASP Umesh Srivastava, Circle Officer Mukul Dwivedi and two policewomen, Inspector Madhu Malati and Sub-Inspector Mamata Gautam after the police had roughed up a number of couples sitting in the Gandhi Park in Meerut district on the previous day under ‘Operation Majnu' in the name of checking “indecency” and “eve-teasing” at public places.[23]

    Police personnel were found to be involved in looting. On 25 October 2005, four armed Government Railway Police constables identified as Sunil Kumar, Naresh Kumar, Pramod Kumar and Rajbeer reportedly boarded the 2506-down North-East Express and looted money from dozens of passengers at gun-point and critically injured Arshad when they resorted to firing at passengers while the train was running between Tundla and Kaurara stations near Etawah.[24]

    3. Violence against women

    Violence against women including rape, kidnapping and dowry deaths were rampant in Uttar Pradesh. National Crime Records Bureau recorded 1,217 cases of rape, 2,256 cases of kidnapping/abduction and 1,564 cases of dowry deaths during 2005.[25]

    Asian Centre for Human Rights documented some cases of sexual abuses committed by law enforcement personnel including molestation and burning to death of Poonam by constable Rama Shankar Yadav on 23 September 2005.[26] Other victims who faced  sexual abuses by police personnel included an unidentified woman of Khanpur area of Bulandshahar in Meerut district, who was gang raped by three constables Vijay Pal, Madan Mohan and Monoj in a drunken state after being forcibly taken to an isolated area on 3 December 2005[27] and attempted rape of Manju Devi of Ludhpura village by the officer-in-charge of Bidhuna police station in Auraiya district when she had gone to the police station to file a complaint against her husband in connection with a quarrel on 10 February 2005.[28]

    Women were victims of cruel cultural practices. On 6 March 2005, a 21-year-old woman Usha was allegedly tonsured, stripped, beaten and paraded through the village on a donkey by local goons while residents of Chandupur village in Kaushambhi district remained mute spectators. A local exorcist had named her as the killer of a small child whose body had been discovered a few days earlier. The police lodged a complaint only after the intervention of the local legislator.[29]

    On 7 May 2005, a 75-year-old Ram Kumari, wife of Jageshwar Tewari allegedly committed Sati by burning herself on her husband's pyre in Bahundari village under  Jaspur police station in Banda district. The police reportedly threatened the woman's son with dire consequences when he had gone to inform about the incident. A magisterial probe was ordered into the incident.[30]

    Illegal trafficking of women was rampant especially in western Uttar Pradesh. Poor women from West Bengal, Bihar, Uttaranchal and Nepal were allegedly brought and sold to people of rural areas in many districts of Uttar Pradesh. On 19 January 2005, police rescued a woman from Bihar who had been sold to one Ratiram of village Tilpara under Nanota Police Station in Saharanpur. The police also arrested Ratiram and Dharampal of village Tilpura.[31]

    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits

    The conditions of the Dalits remained deplorable in Uttar Pradesh.  In February 2005, two Dalits Rajesh, son of Valmiki and Satti Ram, son of Shanga Lal Dohre of Rampur under Thathiya block were reportedly stripped, beaten up and burning bidi butts were repeatedly applied on their private parts at gunpoint by unidentified armed miscreants after being awakened from their sleep. Later the miscreants tied the hands and legs of both and dumped them under the hay. Yet, the police refused to register a case claiming that the victims received the injuries in a fight between themselves and even denied the occurrence of any such incident.[32]

    In September 2005, the body of 18-year-old Dalit, Shyam was recovered from a pond after he was allegedly kidnapped with four others by one Shiv Singh on the charge of stealing his bicycle in Sabalpur Bithoor village in Kanpur.[33]

    The Dalit women were more vulnerable to violence including rape and killing. On 30 June 2005, a 14-year-old Dalit girl, daughter of Mrs Sumitra Devi of Bhatipura under Kithore police station, was allegedly abducted at gunpoint by three youths Johny, Bhule Ram Kuldip and Ravindra when she went to answer the call of nature. She was repeatedly raped for several days. Later, they sold her to a rickshaw-puller for Rs 4,000.

    Although, the girl was recovered from an orphanage on 27 July 2005, the police registered the case only in September 2005. Medical examination of the victim also reportedly confirmed the rape.[34]

    Earlier, on 23 June 2005, a 45-year-old Dalit woman was allegedly tonsured and beaten up following a diktat by a community panchayat in Bijnore district on the charge of having a “loose character.”[35]

    Exercise of political freedom invited the wrath of the majority. On the night of 21 October 2005, a Dalit woman identified as Prabhavati Devi, contesting local elections on a Bahujan Samaj Party ticket was reportedly set ablaze by her rivals for refusing to pull out from the fray in Mujehra Khurd village in Mirzapur district.[36] She succumbed to her over 90 per cent burn injuries on 5 September 2005 in the district hospital. The police have failed to arrest the accused.[37]

    5. Violations of the prisoners' rights

    The conditions of the prisons remained deplorable in Uttar Pradesh. According to the statistics of National Human Rights Commission, there were a total of 52,771 prisoners against the sanctioned capacity of 33,538 prisoners in the 59 jails in Uttar Pradesh as on 31 December 2004.[38] There were more than 2,200 prisoners against the capacity of 720 convicts in Dasna jail as of May 2005.[39]

    In a case of gross negligence, in January 2005, a prisoner from Punjab, Surjit Singh who was lodged in the District Jail in Meerut, appealed to the National Human Rights Commission seeking a probe into his illegal confinement. He alleged that he was not being released by the jail authorities even after the completion of his sentence and that he was being tortured because of his refusal to pay Rs 10,000 to the jail authorities as bribe.[40]

    Many prisoners allegedly died due to torture. The prisoners who died due to alleged torture by jail authorities included Devendra who died in Meerut district jail in February 2005;[41] Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) agent Rafeeq of Udham Singh Nagar in Uttaranchal who died while in detention under POTA in the Meerut district jail on 13 April 2005;[42] Qamruddin, lodged in Barrack Number 11 of Dasna jail, who was allegedly beaten to death by the jail authorities on the night of 2 May 2005[43] and two prisoners, Kuldeep who allegedly committed suicide following  torture and humiliation by jail staff and Aslam who reportedly died under mysterious circumstances in Agra district jail on 25 September 2005;[44]

    Inordinate delay on the part of the prison authorities proved fatal for the prisoner. In December 2005, the National Human Rights Commission, while confirming the death of undertrial prisoner Babu Lal, who succumbed to his burn injuries due to inordinate delay in taking him to the hospital by the jail administration of Banda District Jail of Uttar Pradesh in November 2000, held that technical considerations for shifting a patient to the hospital cannot outweigh the right to life of the patient.[45]



    [1]. Rights panel notice in MLA murder Case, The Deccan Herald, 18 February 2005

    [2]. Former BJP MP shot in Lucknow, The Indian Express, 20 June 2005

    [3]. UP MLA, 6 others shot dead, The Asian Age, 30 November 2005

    [4]. 2005-Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [5]. Outcry against serial UP encounter deaths, The Telegraph, 4 April 2005

    [6]. 2005-Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [7]. Constable molests, kills girl, The Asian Age, 26 September 2005

    [8]. Dalit woman candidate set ablaze by ‘rivals', The Hindu, 22 October 2005

    [9]. Dalit woman contender set ablaze, The Deccan Herald, 7 November 2005

    [10]. CAGED SILENCE, The Indian Express, 29 May 2005

    [11].  “Technicalities cannot outweigh right of undertrial prisoner Patient to healthcare : NHRC”, 16 December 2005, available at http://www.nhrc.nic.in/disparchive.asp?fno=1117

    [12]. 2005-Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [13]. Ibid

    [14]. Wanted man dies mysteriously in custody, The Pioneer, 13 May 2005

    [15]. UP minister's Kin dies in custody, The Times of India, 23 May 2005

    [16]. UP suspends cops after uproar over custody death, The Indian Express, 6 December 2005

    [17]. Armymen push 6 train passengers  to death, The Deccan Herald, 24 January 2005

    [18]. Youth shot at in encounter between police and gangster, The Dainik Jagran, 13 February 2005

    [19]. Police open fire on violent mob, youth killed, The Times of India, 24 April 2005

    [20]. Cops fire at mob in Dadri, 2 killed, The Indian Express, 11 June 2005

    [21]. 7 cops sacked in the case of missing junk dealers, The Tribune, 16 December 2005

    [22]. Errant' driver assaulted by police , The Tribune, 12 March 2005

    [23]. Probe ordered into beating up of couples, The Hindu, 22 December 2005

    [24]. GRP men loot passengers, The Times of India, 26 October 2005

    [25]. 2005-Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [26]. Constable molests, kills girl, The Asian Age, 26 September 2005

    [27]. Meerut cops gangrape woman, The Pioneer, 9 December 2005

    [28]. Molestation bid by officer-in-charge of Bidhuna police station, Dainik Jagran, 13 February 2005

    [29]. Woman, tonsured, stripped, paraded, The Deccan Chronicle, 8 March 2005

    [30]. UP woman commits sati, The Central Chronicle, 27 May 2005

    [31]. Illegal trafficking in women thrives in Western UP, The Pioneer, 21 January 2005

    [32]. Brutal torture of Dalits in Kannauj, Dainik Jagran, 9 February 2005

    [33]. 5 dalit youth kidnapped, 1 found dead, The Deccan Herald, 9 September 2005

    [34]. Girl gangraped; three held - Victim's blue film made, The Tribune, 26 September 2005

    [35]. Woman tonsured, beaten up in UP, The Asian Age, 24 June 2005

    [36]. Dalit woman candidate set ablaze by ‘rivals', The Hindu, 22 October 2005

    [37]. Dalit woman contender set ablaze, The Deccan Herald, 7 November 2005

    [38]. Prison population statistics, National Human Rights Commission, available at: http://nhrc.nic.in/

    [39]. CAGED SILENCE, The Indian Express, 29 May 2005

    [40]. Prisoner's SOS to NHRC, The Tribune, 13 January 2005

    [41]. One more prisoner dies in Meerut jail, The Pioneer, 15 April 2005

    [42]. One more prisoner dies in Meerut jail, The Pioneer, 15 April 2005

    [43]. Third degree claims its victim in Dasna Jail, The Pioneer, 10 May 2005

    [44]. Prisoners clash with police after suicide by inmate, The Tribune, 26 September 2005

    [45].  “Technicalities cannot outweigh right of undertrial prisoner Patient to healthcare : NHRC”, 16 December 2005, available at http://www.nhrc.nic.in/disparchive.asp?fno=1117

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