• REPORTS
  • WEEKLY REVIEW
  • BRIEFING PAPERS
  • PRESS RELEASES
  • INFO BY THEME
  • INFO BY COUNTRY
  • Haryana

    1. Overview. 1
    2. Human rights violations by the security forces 2
    a. Violations of the right to life. 2
    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture. 3
    3. Violence against women. 3
    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits 4
    a. Physical attacks 4
    b. Violence against Dalit women. 6
    c. Denial of access to public properties and services 6
    5. Violations of the rights of the child. 6


     

    1. Overview

    Ruled by the Indian National Congress, Haryana remained infamous for lawlessness. The brutal lathicharge upon the protesting workers of Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Ltd. in Gurgaon on 25 July 2005 in which at least 700 workers were injured, some of them grievously[1], was a clear testimony.

    The National Human Rights Commission recorded 2 cases of deaths in police custody and 49 cases of deaths in judicial custody in Haryana during 2004-2005.[2] Surprisingly, the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Government of India did not record any death in either police or judicial custody in the state during 2005.[3] Asian Centre for Human Rights documented at least three deaths in police custody and one death in judicial custody due to alleged torture during 2005. Magisterial inquiries were instituted into all these custodial deaths. The police were also responsible for arbitrary arrest, detention and torture, sexual assault including on minor girls, and extortion.

    Prison conditions remained deplorable. On 13 June 2005, an undertrial prisoner identified as Babu Ram died under mysterious circumstances in Kurukshetra district jail.[4] On 23 September 2005, the NHRC organised a workshop in Madhuban in Karnal district to improve the poor facilities including living, eating and medical being provided to jail inmates in the state.[5]

    The Dalits continued to face violence from the upper castes while Dalit women were specific targets of sexual abuse. The NCRB recorded 288 cases of violence against the Dalits in Haryana during 2005.[6] Although the number of crimes recorded by the NCRB may be much less in comparison to that of Madhya Pradesh (4,356), persecution against the Dalits in Haryana was as systematic as in Madhya Pradesh. The attack on the Dalits in Gohana in the presence of the police was a case in point.  The Dalits faced discrimination and social ostracization for trying to have access to public properties or services. They were also denied their fundamental right to vote. The elected representatives of the Dalits also faced discrimination and arbitrary removal or suspension from posts in Panchayati Raj institutions in the state. In June 2005, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes in a communiqué to the Haryana Chief Secretary stated, “There have been cases in which the Scheduled Caste representatives have become victims of the wrongdoings of others and been suspended and removed from such posts.”[7]

    2. Human rights violations by the security forces

     

    a. Violations of the right to life

    The security forces were responsible for blatant human rights violations, including torture, arbitrary arrest, detention and custodial killings. The NHRC recorded 2 cases of deaths in police custody and 49 cases of deaths in judicial custody in Haryana during 2004-2005.[8] However, the NCRB did not record any death in either police or judicial custody in the state during 2005.[9]

    Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) documented at least three deaths in police custody due to alleged torture during 2005. On 13 May 2005, Gurmail Singh, a resident of Meghamajra village of Kurukshetra district, died in Kurukshetra Civil Hospital while in police custody. He was picked up on the previous night in connection with a forgery case and kept at Pehowa police station. The family members of the deceased alleged that the doctors who conducted the post-mortem examination told them that Gurmail was badly beaten up. The Deputy Commissioner of Kurukshetra, Mr T.K. Sharma, ordered a magisterial inquiry into the custodial death.[10]

    The other victims included Chhaju Ram, son of Ram Sarup Jat, who died in police custody in Rewari on 15 July 2005,[11] and Bhupesh Narayan, son of advocate Ram Das of Delhi, who died in Thanesar Police Station in Kurukshetra on 8 November 2005.[12] Magisterial inquiries were also instituted into these two cases of custodial deaths. 

    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture

    The police routinely used torture. On 11 May 2005, Murgesh, son of Murgaan, was allegedly picked up from Delhi by the Crime Investigation Agency Staff-1 of Haryana police and illegally detained him at Karnal on the charges of theft and burglaries. The victim was allegedly subjected to third degree torture during illegal custody.[13]

    The other victims of torture included Rakesh Kumar alias Sonu, resident of Karan Vihar in Karnal, who was tortured during illegal detention from 30 April 2005- 2 May 2005,[14] Ajay, an auto rickshaw driver, in Panipat on 2 May 2005,[15] Sikander Singh and his wife Promila who were beaten up in full public view in Lakhanmajra in Rohtak district on 14 October 2005,[16] and Dinesh who was beaten up at Line Par police station by the Station House Officer, Virender Singh in Bahadurgarh town in Jhajjar district on 15 October 2005.[17]

    The police used disproportionate force including the use of lathis (sticks) to beat up protestors. On 25 July 2005, at least 700 workers were injured, some of them grievously, when police personnel resorted to brutal lathi-charge upon the agitating workers of Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Ltd. in Gurgaon. The protestors were demanding the reinstatement of 50 suspended and four dismissed colleagues from the Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Ltd.[18] A judicial probe was ordered into the police action.[19]

    The lawlessness of the police was further exemplified from incidents of extortion and “kidnappings” allegedly carried out by them for ransom. In March 2005, a court in Ambala directed the police to register a case against two officials of a police post of Ambala for allegedly kidnapping and torturing a local resident Megh Raj and his son Gagan for ransom.[20] In another case, an Assistant Sub-Inspector of police, a Head Constable and three other persons including a journalist were booked on the charge of extortion of Rs 40,000 from a local arhtiya of Janta Grain Market in Karnal in March 2005.[21]

    3. Violence against women

    The National Crime Records Bureau recorded 4,161 cases of violence against women, including 461 rapes, 344 abductions, 212 dowry deaths, 2,075 cruelty by husbands and relatives, and 380 molestation cases in Haryana during 2005.[22]

    The police personnel were allegedly responsible for sexual assault against women.  In June 2005, the Kotwali police registered a case against a police constable on the charge of raping a girl of A.C Nagar in the NIT area in Faridabad. According to the complaint lodged by the mother of the victim, the accused police constable who used to visit their house on one pretext or the other raped her daughter when she was alone in the house.[23]

    On 26 October 2005, Pushpinder Kaur, a social activist and an office-bearer of Chaudhary Devi Lal Yuva Club, lodged a complaint with the police alleging molestation by a police constable identified as Satbir Singh while she was waiting outside the Panchayat Bhavan in Sonepat. The accused constable was arrested.[24]

    On 29 November 2005, a policeman was arrested on the charge of raping a widow from a JJ colony in Sector 31 in Faridabad. When the victim approached the police station alleging harassment from some anti-social elements, the accused policeman visited her house on the pretext of investigating and raped her.[25]

    4. Violations of the rights of the Dalits

    The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) recorded 288 cases of violence against the Dalits in Haryana during 2005.[26] Although the number of crimes recorded by the NCRB may be much less in comparison to that of Madhya Pradesh (4,356), persecution against the Dalits in Haryana was as systematic as in Madhya Pradesh. Haryana continued to witness serious violations of the rights of the Dalits - from physical attacks to rape of Dalit women.

    a. Physical attacks

    The Dalits were targets of physical attacks by the upper caste people while the police and the administration remained silent spectators. The attack on the Dalits at Gohana is a case in point.

    On 31 August 2005, hundreds of upper caste belonging to Jat community attacked the Dalits of Balmiki colony in Gohana in Sonepat district. 54 Dalit houses were set on fire and several others ransacked and looted by a mob of the Jats even as large number of police personnel deployed in the area watched the mayhem. The attack was reportedly in retaliation to the killing of a Jat youth allegedly by some Dalit youth of Balmiki colony on 27 August 2005. Following threats from the Jat community, the Dalits of the area had sought police protection but the police allegedly asked the Dalits to flee from their houses. As a result, about 1,000 Dalits reportedly fled from the Balmiki colony to safer areas between 27 August and 30 August 2005.[27] Field investigations by National Campaign for Dalit Human Rights[28] and the All India Lawyers Union[29] confirmed that the police remained silent spectators during the violence which lasted for nearly three hours. The National Commission for Scheduled Castes in its interim report to the Haryana government blamed the district administration for its failure to take any preventive measures, although the authorities had prior information about such a threat from the Jat community to the Dalits.[30] On 5 September 2005, Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda ordered an investigation by Central Bureau of Investigation to probe into the incident, and increased the compensation to Rs 1 lakh for each victim.[31]

    The Gohana incident was followed up by attack on a Dalit family by about 50 upper caste people led by ex-sarpanch (former village head) Dalip Singh at Kirdhan village in Fatehabad district on 4 September 2005. Six member of the Dalit family including two women were reportedly injured in the attack. The injured were identified as Manphool, Prithvi, Inderaj, Sooraj Bhan, Seema and Rajo. Dalip Singh wanted to forcibly grab the lands of the Dalit family. But the police reportedly did not register any case in connection with this attack.[32]

    Apart from failure to protect the Dalits from atrocities by the upper castes, the Haryana police was responsible for atrocities against the Dalits. The police atrocities against the Dalits reached full circle when in August 2005, a Dalit family comprising of five members was reportedly forced to flee from Bahadurgarh in Jhajjar district due to alleged atrocities by the police.[33]

    The Dalits were also denied the right to franchise and many faced attacks for exercising the right to vote. On 9 August 2005, Jaswant Singh, resident of Deeg village of Ballabhgarh subdivision under Faridabad district, was allegedly beaten to death by upper caste people for not casting his vote for the upper caste candidate in the Gram Panchayat elections. Medical examination reportedly confirmed that the deceased died due to injuries but the police allegedly refused to take action against the accused. It was only after the intervention of the Deputy Commissioner, Ms G. Anupama that the police registered a case on 12 August 2005.[34]

    b. Violence against Dalit women

    Dalit women continued to be victims of violence by the upper castes. On 11 June 2005, a teenaged Dalit girl named Babli alias Sushma was allegedly abducted and killed by members of the Ahir community at Devas village in Mahendragarh district in order to take revenge against her uncle Rajesh for daring to become the Sarpanch (elected village head) of the village in April 2005 after the seat was declared reserved for the Dalits. The autopsy conducted on 15 June 2005 recorded “blow by a blunt and hard object on the head” as the probable cause of Babli's death.[35]

    On 14 September 2005, The Asian Age reported that a minor Dalit girl, daughter Moolchand, resident of Ballabgarh in Faridabad district, had been held hostage by a landlord of a neighbouring village since three months. Moolchand approached the local police station several times for help to rescue his daughter but the police allegedly got angry, made casteist remarks and beat him up. One senior police officer allegedly told Moolchand, “What will you do with your daughter, she is now pregnant?” Later, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes reportedly sought an Action Taken Report from the Superintendent of Police, Faridabad into the matter.[36]

    c. Denial of access to public properties and services

    The Dalits were denied access to public properties and services. In Badhram village in Pulwal district, all the 45 Dalit villagers were reportedly socially ostracized and confined to their homes by the landlords after they offered prayers at the village temple on 20 July 2005. Following the diktat of the landlords, the Dalits were not allowed to buy essential commodities from the village shops. The Dalits were beaten up and the moustache of one Dalit man was reportedly shoved off every day as a part of humiliation. But the local police allegedly refused to take cognizance of the matter. On 11 August 2005, the National Commission for Scheduled Castes asked the Inspector-General of Police (Gurgaon range) to provide security to the Dalit villagers and submit an Action Taken Report within 10 days.[37] Even as a Deputy Superintendent of Police visited Badhram village on 12 August 2005, the landlords set fire to three Dalit houses, beat up a Dalit identified as Bhim and attacked a Dalit woman (name withheld).[38]

    Denial of entry into common temples led Dalits to construct their own temples in most of the villages in Haryana.[39]

    5. Violations of the rights of the child

    The National Crime Records Bureau recorded 374 cases of crimes against children in the state, including 38 murder cases, 131 rape cases, 101 kidnapping cases during 2005.[40]

    Children continued to be victims of violence in the State.

    On 1 January 2005, two persons, including a naib tehsildar of the state government posted at Palwal town in Faridabad district of Haryana, abducted a 15-year-old girl student of Government Girls Secondary School, Palwal. Following her release, the victim alleged rape by her captors and medical examination also confirmed rape. But the police officials allegedly forced the victim to change her statement. On 6 January 2005, lawyers staged a demonstration alleging that a senior police official posted at Palwal called the victim to the police station on the pretext of personally hearing her and thrashed her to force her to change her statement.[41]

    In October 2005, head constable Jagmal Singh was arrested and six other policemen were suspended and an inquiry under Inspector General P V Rathee was ordered by the State government after a television news channel showed a clip of a minor boy being tortured by the accused during illegal detention at the Crime Investigation Agency police station in Panchkula on 13 March 2005. The boy was allegedly assaulted for hours and was later tied to a tree upside down.[42]



    [1]. 700 workers injured in clash with Gurgaon police, The Times of India, 25 July 2005 

    [2]. 2004-2005 Annual Report of NHRC of India

    [3]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau, Government of India 

    [4]. Prisoner dies, probe ordered, The Tribune, 15 June 2005 

    [5]. Need to improve facilities for jail inmates, says NHRC member, The Tribune, 24 September 2005

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

    [7]. Scheduled Caste members facing harassment: panel, Tribune, 25 June 2005 

    [8]. 2004-2005 Annual Report of NHRC

    [9]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [10]. Probe ordered into custodial death, The Tribune, 16 May 2005 

    [11]. One dies in police custody, The Tribune, 16 July 2005 

    [12]. Youth escapes kidnappers, dies in police station, The Hindustan Times, 9 November 2005 

    [13]. Tortured suspect swallows lizard, The Tribune, 16 May 2005 

    [14]. Harassed by cops, youth ends life, The Tribune, 7 May 2005 

    [15]. Cops beat up autorickshaw driver, no FIR registered, The Tribune, 4 May 2005

    [16]. Cops beat up couple; villagers block traffic, The Tribune, 15 October 2005 

    [17]. Cops beat up youth, fracture his leg, The Tribune, 17 October 2005 

    [18]. 700 workers injured in clash with Gurgaon police, The Times of India, 25 July 2005 

    [19]. Gurgaon rocks Parliament - Judicial probe ordered, says Patil, The Tribune, 27 July 2005 

    [20]. Two cops booked for kidnapping, torture, The Tribune, 11 March 2005 

    [21]. Scribe, cops booked for ‘extortion', The Tribune, 17 March 2005

    [22]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau 

    [23]. Policeman booked for rape, The Tribune, 9 June 2005 

    [24]. Constable booked for molestation, The Tribune, 28 October 2005

     

    [25]. Policeman held for rape of jhuggi dweller, The Tribune, 1 December 2005 

    [26]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [27]. 200 cops on duty when colony was attacked, The Indian Express, 3 September 2005  

    [28]. Dalit NGO for CBI inquiry into Gohana incident, The Times of India, 5 September 2005 

    [29]. Dalits were attacked with police, admn complicity: Report, The Kashmir Times, 14 September 2005 

    [30]. No preventive action taken in Gohana, says report, The Times of India, 19 September 2005 

    [31]. Hooda orders CBI probe - Compensation for Gohana victims hiked to Rs 1 lakh, The Tribune, 6 September 2005 

    [32]. Mob attacks Dalit family, 6 hurt, The Tribune, 5 September 2005

    [33]. Dalit family flees following police ‘atrocities', The Tribune, 25 August 2005 

    [34].  ‘Cops shielding Dalit youth's killers' , The Tribune, 10 October 2005

    [35]. Mysterious death of girl threatens communal harmony, The Tribune, 14 August 2005 

    [36]. Dalit's daughter is hostage, The Asian Age, 14 September 2005 

    [37]. Landlords confine 45 dalits in village, The Asian Age, 12 August 2005 

    [38]. Landlords set 3 houses on fire, The Asian Age, 13 August 2005 

    [39]. Haryana, Punjab lead in atrocities against dalits, The Tribune, 20 August 2005 

    [40]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [41]. Rescued girl alleges rape  - Police ‘shielding' the accused, The Tribune, 7 January 2005 

    [42]. 6 policemen suspended in Haryana, The Times of India, 18 October 2005 

    | Home | About ACHR | Press Releases | Weekly Review | Campaigns | Briefing Papers | Reports |
    | Links | Info by Theme | ACHR Impact | Info by Country | ACHR in Media | Contact Us
    Copyright © 2007 Asian Centre for Human Rights. All rights reserved.