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  • Maharashtra

    1. Overview. 1
    2. Human rights violations by the security forces 2
    a. Deprivation of the right to life. 2
    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture. 4
    3. Violations of international humanitarian laws by the AOGs 4
    4. Violence against women. 5
    5. Violatioons of the rights of the Dalits 6
    6. Violations of the rights of the child. 6
    7. Special Focus I: Starvation deaths 7
    8. Special Focus II: Farmers' suicide. 8


    1. Overview

    Ruled by Indian National Congress and Nationalist Congress Party coalition, Maharashtra continued to reel under lawlessness and other serious human rights violations. Indiscipline of the police personnel was a major problem. In October 2005, Maharashtra Home Department reportedly prepared a list of at least 273 police personnel facing charges like coming drunk on duty, frequent absenteeism, insubordination, corruption and mis-conduct.[1] On 28 October 2005, Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister R R Patil stated that the Maharashtra government had suspended 37 police personnel and terminated the services of five others after being found under the influence of liquor on duty in the last two years.[2]

    The tribal belt of Maharashtra - Thane, Nandurbar, Nashik, Amravati and Gadchiroli districts - continued to face increasing conflict with the Maoists. On 6 July 2005, the Maharashtra Government announced an amnesty scheme for Maoists, which included cash rewards, rehabilitation, free education to children and police protection, and review of the cases of the surrendered Maoists, among others.[3] But it had little effect.

    The tribal dominated districts remained under-developed and the indigenous peoples continued to be denied economic, social and cultural rights. On 25 August 2005, the government of Maharashtra admitted before the Bombay High Court that a total of 2,675 children died due to malnutrition in the tribal dominated districts of Thane, Nandurbar, Nashik, Amravati and Gadchiroli between April and July 2005. These included 1,085 infants below one year and 1,590 children in the age group of 1-6 years.[4] On 26 August 2005, Bombay High Court directed the Maharashtra government to submit a time-bound plan for implementation of the recommendations of the Evaluation Committee on Child Deaths headed by leading health activist Abhay Bang to tackle malnutrition deaths.[5]

    The Dalits faced atrocities from the upper castes. On 3 September 2005, 25 Dalit houses were burnt to ashes by the upper caste Marathas at Belkhed village in Akola district in protest against the Dalits' participation in the celebration of the Pola festival.[6]

    Both women and children remained insecure. The National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) of the Government of India recorded 13,370 cases of crime against women in the state which amounted to 8.6 % of the total cases against women registered in India during 2005. These included 1,545 cases of rape, 3,228 cases of molestation, 851 cases of abduction, 341 dowry deaths, and 6,233 cases of cruelty by husbands and relatives.[7] On 21 April 2005, a 17-year-old college girl was raped by a drunken constable, Sunil Atmaram More inside a police post on Marine Drive in Mumbai.[8]

    According to NHRC, there were 24,752 prisoners against the sanctioned capacity of 18,964 resulting in 30.5% overcrowding in the jails of Maharashtra as of 31 December 2004. There were 15,777 undertrial prisoners constituting of 63.7% of the total prisoners.[9]

    On 11 June 2005, Special judge under the Prevention of Terrorism Act, Mr. Ashok P Bhangale acquitted all the eight accused - Dr. Mohammed Abdul Matin, Muzammil Jamil Ahmed, Imran Rehman Khan, Mohammed Altaf, Toufiq Hamid, Aarif Panwala, Rashid Ansari and Haroon Rashid Lohar - in the Ghatkopar bus blasts case of December 2002 as the prosecution failed to produce evidence against them.[10] The state government moved the Bombay High Court against the POTA court's verdict.[11]

    On 14 June 2005, the Review Committee on POTA headed by Justice Usha Mehra in its recommendations to the State Secretary of Maharashtra asked to discharge two accused, Mohammed Ansari alias Urman Laduwala and Mommed Ansar Sheikh alias Hasan Batteriwala, held for conspiring the twin blasts in Mumbai in 2003 as there was no evidence against them.[12]

    The government also failed to check the rising numbers of suicides by farmers.

    2. Human rights violations by the security forces

    a. Deprivation of the right to life

    According to the Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission, 218 cases of custodial deaths were registered during 1 April 2003-31 March 2004, and 95 custodial death cases were registered during 1 April 2004-31 August 2004 alone.[13] The National Crime Records Bureau recorded deaths of 17 persons in police custody and deaths of 19 civilians in police firing during 2005.[14] The NHRC received 23 cases of deaths in police custody and 138 cases of deaths in judicial custody in Maharashtra during 2004-2005.[15]

    However, the denial on the part of the State government remained problematic. In April 2005, Deputy Chief Minister R R Patil stated in a written reply in Maharashtra Legislative Council that the state government of Maharashtra registered 47 custodial deaths in the state in 2003 and 2004. While 26 custodial deaths, including five natural deaths, one accidental and nine suicides were registered in 2003, 21 custodial deaths, including five natural deaths and two suicides were registered in 2004. Mr Patil stated that investigation was on in 11 cases and charge sheet had been filed against the accused in three cases.[16]

    Some of the reported cases of custodial deaths are given below:

    On 6 January 2005, T.C. Prashanth of Karnataka was beaten to death allegedly by the police in Mumbai. The deceased was working for Zuventus Health Care Ltd. in Mumbai.[17]

    On 6 March 2005, Dayaneswhar Rai was found hanging in the police lock-up in Thane. He was allegedly beaten to death in the police custody, and later hanged to show it as a case of suicide. The deceased along with his brother-in-law Vinod Rai was arrested on charges of selling brown sugar and remanded to police custody. Three constables B W Bhosale, K C Chaudhary and R A Patil were suspended for dereliction of duty. State CID was asked to inquire into the incident.[18]

    On 25 August 2005, Irshad Sheikh was killed by the police in an alleged encounter at Andheri (west). Irshad Sheikh was reportedly hit in the forehead and also had bullet injuries in the chest. In September 2005, the victim's brother Ashfaque Sheikh filed a complaint with the State Human Rights Commission of Maharashtra alleging extrajudicial killing.[19]

    On 4 October 2005, Kiran Patkar died in the custody of railway police in Thane. The railway police claimed that Kiran Patkar had committed suicide inside the railway barracks where he was summoned for questioning for his alleged involvement in chain snatching and mobile theft cases. Police constable Shahji Madne was suspended for dereliction of duty on 6 October 2005.[20] A Criminal Investigation Department inquiry was also ordered.[21]

    On 19 December 2005, Prashant Shyamraon Humne, an accused in a kidnapping case, died in Sakoli police station in Bhandara district. Following strong public protest, head constable Tejram Uikey (Buckle No. 572), constables Kundalik Kathane (Buckle No. 323) and Vishnu Khandate (Buckle No. 706) were suspended.[22]

    On 24 December 2005, Aslam Shaikh died in the custody of Ootur police station in Pune. The victim was detained by the Pune Rural Police for questioning in connection with motorcycle theft. According to Police Inspector S H Kengar, Aslam Shaikh tore the blanket given to him and hanged himself in the police station.[23]

    The police made all attempts to hide custodial killings. On 23 February 2005, suspended Sub-Inspector Pratap Kakade, an accusd in the infamous multi-crore fake stamp scam involving Abdul Karim Telgi, died under mysterious circumstances in the Yerawada jail. While Deputy Inspector General of Prisons Dhanaji Chaudhari claimed that Kakade had died due to a heart attack, the post mortem report found that Kakade had “multiple injuries under the neck and chest anterior”.[24] A magisterial inquiry was ordered into Kakade's death.[25]

    The police also extrajudicially executed by using fire-arms. On 3 May 2005, Sub Inspector Bhausuheb Magre attached to the Venkatpura sub-police station shot dead Shankar Parkiwar when the latter objected to Magre's attempt to molest his wife Nirmala at their home at Venkatpur village near Aheri in Gadchiroli district. Sub-Inspector Bhausuheb Magre had gone along with a colleague to question Shankar Parkiwar who was listed in police records as a Naxal sympathiser. Deputy Superintendent of Police (Home) Subash Gujar however claimed that Magre had killed Shankar Parkiwar in self-defence.[26] On 5 May 2005, Superintendent of Police (Gaclchiroli) Shirish Jain stated that it was constable Tekam and not Magre who had shot at Shankar Pakirwar and killed him on the spot.[27]

    On 25 April 2005, Railway Protection Force (RPF) constable G S Pandey shot dead Dudhnath Yadav following an argument at Sewree railway station in Mumbai. The constable accused the deceased of stealing scrap from a godown at Sewree station.[28]

    Police enjoyed virtual impunity. In a rarest case, on 17 January 2005, the Nagpur bench of the Bombay High Court sentenced 12 police personnel, including retired DSP Sadashiv Bhalerao, Inspector Arun Bhadikar and Police Sub-Inspector Shankar Shende to life imprisonment for the custodial death of Dilip Bhosale in Arvi in Wardha district in November 1987.[29]

    b. Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture

    Arbitrary arrest, illegal detention and torture were rampant.  On 29 April 2005, a railway police constable Simon Koli, posted in a ladies' second-class compartment of a Virar-bound fast local train, was arrested at Borivali railway police station in Mumbai for allegedly slapping and abusing a two-month pregnant woman in the train. Koli was allegedly drunk on duty.[30]

    Lawless law enforcement was widespread. In July 2005, the Maharashtra government reportedly agreed to pay Rs 1 lakh to the widow of a man who succumbed to police brutality after his arrest during raid on gambling dens in 2002.[31]

    On 25 December 2005, a kerosene dealer identified as Mukesh Patel was allegedly beaten up in full public view at the local police station at Navegaonbandh in Bhandara district. The police had picked him up following complaint of black-marketing against him. Police Inspector G R Kankale who was involved in the incident was reportedly suspended.[32]

    3. Violations of international humanitarian laws by the AOGs

    The tribal dominated districts continued to face increasing conflict with the Maoists. On 6 July 2005, the Maharashtra Government announced an amnesty scheme for the Maoists “who are active in the State and registered in Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh”. Under the scheme, the surrendered Maoists were offered cash prize at the time of surrender and additional money for their surrendered weapons. The surrendered Maoists offered land and house or Rs 50,000 in lieu of the house, free education to their children and protection. The government also offered to review the cases filed against the surrendered Maoist cadres. The scheme was applicable for six months.[33] But the surrender policy failed to curb the Maoists' menace.

    The Maoists continued to target civilians as “police informers”. On 19 May 2005, the Maoists killed two villagers identified as Karuram Poya and Kisan Madavi on the charges of being police informers in Gadchiroli district. While Karuram Poya was shot dead, Kisan Madavi was beheaded.[34] In another incident on the night of 24 July 2005, Naxalites shot dead a tribal identified as Bapu Roshan Kumbhri at Garkapeth village under Rompalli Police Assistance Centre in Gadchiroli on the charges of being a police infomer.[35]

    Those who held public posts were also attacked. On the night of 27 September 2005, the Maoists killed Mondi alias Deepak Gawde, sarpanch of Umanur village under Jimalgatta Sub-police Station in Aheri taluka in Gadchiroli district.[36]

    The Maoists were also responsible for hostage taking. On 18 January 2005, Naxalites abducted a Border Roads Organisation Supervisor Major Unnikrishnan from village Gumankonda in Gadchiroli district and demanded Rs four lakh as ransom.[37]

    4. Violence against women

    The National Crime Records Bureau recorded 13,370 cases against women in the state which amounted to 8.6 % of the total cases against women recorded in India during 2005. These included 1,545 cases of rape, 3,228 cases of molestation, 851 cases of abduction, 341 dowry deaths and 6,233 cases of cruelty by husbands and relatives.[38]

    The law enforcement personnel were responsible for rape and sexual harassment of women. On 21 April 2005, a 17-year-old college girl was raped by a drunk constable identified Sunil Atmaram More inside a police post on Marine Drive. The constable took the girl inside the police post for “questioning” after she was found loitering with a male friend.[39] The incident triggered public anger. On 24 April 2005, Sunil More was dismissed from service.[40] On 26 September 2005, the State Government informed the Bombay High Court that it had already paid Rs 3 lakh compensation to the rape victim.[41]

    On the night of 17 October 2005, a drunken head constable identified as Chandrakant Pawar attached to Sahar police station raped a 15-year-old ragpicker after taking her to an isolated place near the Mumbai airport. Medical examination at Nagpada police hospital confirmed rape. The accused was arrested and remanded to police custody till 25 October 2005.[42]

    On 30 April 2005, a railway police constable Simon Koli was suspended on the charges of molesting a woman passenger in a local train in Mumbai.[43]

    On 8 May 2005 at around 10.15 pm, two drunken constables identified as Sunil Dhanaji Sawant and Subhash More allegedly molested a 42-year-old married woman in front of her husband and daughter at platform no. 2 of Thane railway station. Both the police constables were arrested on charges of molestion and remanded to judicial custody.[44]

    On 10 June 2005 at around 9.30 pm, a drunken SI Sudesh Shinde reportedly molested a beauty parlour owner after barging into her parlour opposite Mahim church in Mumbai. Following a complaint by the victim with the Mahim police station, the accused was arrested on 14 June 2005.[45]

    On 16 November 2005, a minor girl was allegedly raped by an army jawan along with two civilians at the army's branch recruitment office compound in Nagpur. The army jawan was reportedly arrested.[46]

    5. Violatioons of the rights of the Dalits

    The National Crime Records Bureau recorded 865 cases of violence against the Dalits during 2005. A total of 6,626 cases of atrocities against the Dalits were pending trial in courts and another 248 cases were pending investigation by the police in the state by the end of 2005. Although the charge-sheeting rate was 97.4%, the conviction rate for the crimes against the Dalits in the state was merely 5.9% during 2005.[47]

    The Dalits continued to face repression of the upper castes. On 23 September 2005, the upper caste Marathas burnt down 25 Dalit houses during an attack at Belkhed village in Akola. The Marathas had objected to participation of the Dalits in celebration of the Pola festival, an agricultural festival where cattle are worshipped. Around 70-80 Dalits reportedly fled their homes.[48]

    In November 2005, a Dalit youth identified as Banesh Malayya Pulluri was beaten up in full public view and humiliated by forcing him to wear garland of chappals. He was also forced to eat human excreta at the order of the Gram Sabha (village council) for writing a love letter to an upper caste girl at Jamanpalli village under Sironcha tehsil in Gadchiroli district. On 11 December 2005, police arrested four persons in this connection.[49]

    6. Violations of the rights of the child

    The National Crime Records Bureau recorded a total of 2305 cases of crimes against children in Maharashtra which amounted to 15.4 % of all the crimes against children registered in India during 2005. Of these 2,305 cases, 189 were murder cases, 634 cases of rape and 420 cases of kidnapping.[50] 

    Maharashtra had high incidence of child labour. On 1 June 2005, Mumbai police during a raid in coordination with NGOs rescued over 400 child labourers from various industrial units in Madanpura, central Mumbai and arrested 42 employers.[51] Following NHRC's intervention on 9 June 2005 seeking a report from the Chief Secretary of Maharashtra on the action initiated against the erring employers of industrial units within two weeks,[52] the state government instituted a task force comprising police and the personnel from the labour department and rescued 80 underaged workers and arrested four industrial unit employers in Mumbai on 10 June 2005.[53] 

    On 23 July 2005, Mumbai police in cooperation with the Labour Department, the Women and Child Welfare Department and several NGOs raided 17 zari (embroidery) units in Gowandi in north-east Mumbai and rescued 72 children. At least 10 employers were taken into custody.[54]

    7. Special Focus I: Starvation deaths

    The deaths of tribal children in five tribal dominated districts of Maharashtra i.e. Thane, Nandurbar, Nashik, Amravati and Gadchiroli due to malnutrition proved that the fruits of development did not reach the tribals. On 25 August 2005, the government of Maharashtra admitted before the Bombay High Court that a total of 2,675 children died due to malnutrition in the tribal dominated districts of Thane, Nandurbar, Nashik, Amravati and Gadchiroli between April and July 2005. These included 1,085 infants below one year and 1,590 children in the age group of 1-6 years.[55] On 26 August 2005, Bombay High Court directed the Maharashtra government to submit a time-bound plan for implementation of the recommendations of the Evaluation Committee on Child Deaths headed by leading health activist by Abhay Bang to tackle malnutrition deaths.[56]

    The apathy of the state government was clear from its policies. The state government decreased budgetary allocation for providing relief to the malnutrition victims from Rs 742 crore to Rs 227 crore in the 2004-2005 budget despite the situation being so grave.[57]

    The state of denial made the things worse. On 24 December 2005, it was reported that eight children identified as Balya Balkrishna Kanekar of Gardenpur, Pratiksha Sanju Sahare of Kadoli, Baby Vijay Belsare of Kumbitola, Sumeet Rajkumar Puram of Eitkheda, Bali Deenbandhu Lade of Kadoli, Deepa Suresh Loni of Morgaon, Balu Rajesh Gote of Eitkheda and Pinku Baban Karade of Peethatola in Arjuni Morgaon tehsil of Gondia district died of malnutrition in the last two months. But the district authorities including the District Health Officer and Block Development Officer offered reasons such as pneumonia, premature birth, jaundice, ‘being mentally retarded', hiccups etc for their deaths. In one case, the authorities even claimed that the baby died due to “excessive crying”.[58] 

    Earlier, on 8 August 2005, the Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar stated in the Lok Sabha that no incidence of starvation death was reported by any state government or Union Territory during 2004.[59]

    The state government also under-reported the cases of malnutrition death. A survey by NGO Punarvasan Sangharsh Samiti (PSS) released in 27 August 2005 claimed that 98 children died between April and June 2005 in Akkalkuwa block of tribal-dominated Nandurbar district alone. Of them, 71 died of malnutrition. The PSS alleged that the government of Maharashtra deliverately hid the actual number of the malnourished children. For example, the PSS recorded 188 severely malnourished children in April 2005 while the government records showed only 20 malnourished children.[60]

    8. Special Focus II: Farmers' suicide

    As in Andhra Pradesh, the farmers of Maharashtra faced serious distress because of crop failure, indebtedness and the government's apathy. The most affected districts are Yeotmal, Amravati, Akola, Washim and Buldana in Amravati Division, and Wardha in Nagpur Division.

    In its final report submitted to the Mumbai High Court on 16 March 2005, Tata Institute of Social Sciences stated that a total of 644 farmers committed suicide in Maharashtra from 1 March 2001 to 31 December 2004, including 448 deaths in Amravati, 90 in Aurangabad, 66 in Nagpur, 38 in Nashik and 1 each in Pune and Kolhapur. Of these, 41 died in 2001, 73 in 2002, 129 in 2003 and 401 in 2004. The report concluded that “Repeated crop failures, inability to meet the rising cost of cultivation, and indebtedness seem to create a situation that forces farmers to commit suicide. However, not all farmers facing these conditions commit suicide — it is only those who seem to have felt that they have exhausted all avenues of securing support have taken their lives.”[61]

    The government failed to provide the accurate figures. On 13 July 2005, Agriculture Minister Balasaheb Thorat in a written reply to a question raised by BJP legislator Vinod Tawade in Maharashtra Legislative Council stated that a total of 524 farmers had committed suicide in 2004.[62] Earlier, in July 2005, the Maharashtra government reportedly told the NHRC that only 140 farmers ended their lives between 2001 and 2004 due to “crop failure because of drought and heavy indebtedness”.[63] Again on 4 December 2005, Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh stated that during the last five years a total of 1041 farmers committed suicides; 92 per cent suicides were due to indebtedness. He stated that compensation was given to family members of 223 farmers who ended their lives.[64]

    On 6 November 2005, Pardesh Pachkawdu Jata, a tribal farmer from Dhamditola village in Gadchiroli district, reportedly became the 100th farmer to end his life in Vidarbha region of Maharashtra in 2005.[65]

    About 178 commited suicide during 2005. Of them, 35 farmers ended their lives in the first 11 days of December 2005.[66] On 9 December 2005, Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh announced a comprehensive special package of Rs.1,075 Crores for the farmers in the Vidarbha region.[67]



    [1]. 273 errant cops on Home Ministry hit list, The Free Press Journal, 21 October 2005

    [2]. 37 cops suspended, 5 terminated in 2 yrs for getting drunk, The Sentinel, 29 October 2005

    [3]. Mah announces amnesty for Naxals, The Hitavada, 7 July 2005

    [4]. Maharashtra admits thousands died, The Deccan Chroncle, 26 August 2005

    [5]. Implement report to arrest malnutrition deaths: High Court, The Hindu, 27 August 2005

    [6]. 25 Dalit homes torched in Akola, The Central Chronicle, 5 September 2005

    [7]. 2005 Annual Report of the National Crime Records Bureau

    [8]. Rape on Marine Drive, The Telegraph, 22 April 2005

    [9]. NHRC's prison statistics as of 31 December 2004

    [10]. All acquitted in Ghatkopar bus blasts case, The Hindu, 12 June 2005

    [11]. Ghatkopar blast case: Government grants sanction for appeal, The Free Press Journal, 13 July 2005

    [12]. Discharge Petition of POTA accused to come up today, The Free Press Journal, 10 August 2005

    [13]. http://mshrc.maharashtra.gov.in/caseworkShow.php

    [14]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [15]. 2004-2005 Annual Report of NHRC

    [16]. 47 custodial deaths in the state in last two years: Patil, The Free Press Journal, 4 April 2005

    [17]. Youth ‘beaten to death' in Mumbai, The Hindu, 7 January 2005

    [18]. Death of undertiral rocks Thane city, The Free Press Journal, 9 March 2005

    [19]. Encounter victim's brother moves SHRC, The Free Press Journal, 4 September 2005

    [20]. Railway constable suspended, The Asian Age, 7 October 2005

    [21]. Constable suspended in custodial death case, The Free Press Journal, 8 October 2005

    [22]. Sakoli tense as youth dies in custody, The Hitavada, 20 December 2005

    [23]. Detainee kills self in police station, The Free Press Journal, 25 December 2005

    [24]. Cop arrested in Telgi case dies in custody, The Indian Express, 24 February 2004

    [25]. Magisterial probe ordered into Kakade custody death, The Indian Express, 26 February 2005

    [26]. PSI tries to molest woman, shoots hubby to death, The Hitavada, 5 May 2005

    [27]. Constable shot Pakirwar, not PSI, say SP, The Hitavada, 6 May 2005

    [28]. One gunned down by RPF jawan, The Free Press Journal, 27 April 2005

    [29]. Custodial death: 12 cops get lifer, The Free Press Journal, 19 January 2005

    [30]. Cop ‘slaps' woman on train, arrested, The Indian Express, 1 May 2005

    [31]. Police brutality case, The Hindustan Times, 9 July 2005

    [32].  ‘Beaten' by cops, Navegaon trader tries to end life, The Hitavada, 28 December 2005

    [33]. Mah announces amnesty for Naxals, The Hitavada, 7 July 2005

    [34]. 7 cops dead: Naxal toll ticking in Gadchiroli - Two villagers with ‘informer' tag shot dead, The Indian Express, 21 May 2005

    [35]. Naxals shoot tribal to death in Gadchiroli, The Hitavada, 26 July 2005

    [36]. Naxals kill sarpanch near Aheri, The Hitavada, 29 September 2005

    [37]. Naxals abduct BRO officer, demand Rs 4 lakh, The Central Chronicle, 21 January 2005

    [38]. 2005 Annual Report of the National Crime Records Bureau

    [39]. Rape on Marine Drive, The Telegraph, 22 April 2005

    [40]. Mumbai constable gets boot after rape charges - Cops say More threatened girl before raping her, The Indian Express, 25 April 2005

    [41]. Marine Rive rape victim gets Rs 3 lakh compensation, The Free Press Journal, 27 September 2005

    [42]. Cop rapes girl near Mumbai airport, The Indian Express, 19 October 2005

    [43]. Railway cop booked, suspended for molestation, The Free Press Journal, 1 May 2005

    [44]. Virus spreads to west, The Telegraph, 10 May 2005

    [45]. Molest slur, The Telegraph, 15 June 2005

    [46]. Army jawan held on rape charge, The Telegraph, 17 November 2005

    [47]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [48]. 25 Dalit homes torched in Akola, The Central Chronicle, 5 September 2005

    [49]. Sironcha Dalit youth beaten up, made to eat faeces; 4 held, The Hitavada, 12 December 2005

    [50]. 2005 Annual Report of National Crime Records Bureau

    [51]. Over 400 child labourers rescued, The Times of India, 2 June 2005

    [52]. Maharashtra government asked about follow-up action on rescued Child Labourers, NHRC press release, 9 June 2005

    [53]. NHRC takes up cudgels for child workers, The Free Press Journal, 11 June 2005

    [54]. Child workers rescued, The Hindu, 24 July 2005

    [55]. Maharashtra admits thousands died, The Deccan Chroncle, 26 August 2005

    [56]. Implement report to arrest malnutrition deaths: High Court, The Hindu, 27 August 2005

    [57]. HC pulls up State on malnutrition deaths, The Free Press Journal, 5 February 2005

    [58]. Gondia kids' deaths not due to malnutrition, says admn, The Hitavada, 24 December 2005

    [59]. Not starvation deaths in any State', The Hitavada, 8 August 2005

    [60]. 71 children died of malnutrition in Akkalkuwa in three months, The Hindu, 28 August 2005

    [61]. TISS' study report, “Causes of Farmer Suicides in Maharashtra: An Enquiry”, http://tiss.edu/Causes%20of%20Farmer%20Suicides%20in%20Maharashtra.pdf

    [62]. 524 farmers committed suicide in 2004: Minister, The Free Press Journal, 14 July 2005

    [63]. Maharashtra tells NHRC: Debt drove 140 farmers to suicide, The Indian Express, 2 July 2005

    [64]. 1041 farmers' suicides, help for only 223, The Hitavada, 5 December 2005

    [65]. Farmer suicide toll rises to 100 in Vidharba, The Times of India, 8 November 2005

    [66]. Suicides continue despite CM's relief, The Times of India, 20 December 2005

    [67]. Package for Vidarbha ryots, Deccan Herald, 10 December 2005, http://www.deccanherald.com/deccanherald/dec102005/national2113142005129.asp

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