Category Archive Human Rights Law

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The Protection of Civil Rights Act, 1955

(Act No. 22 of 1955)

[8th May 1955]

An Act to prescribe punishment for the 1[preaching and practice of “Untouchability”] for the enforcement of any disability arising there form and for matters connected therewith.

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976, for, “practice of Untouchability”.

Section 1. Short title, extent and commencement

(1) This Act may be called 1[the Protection of Civil Rights Act,] 1955.

(2) It extends to the whole of India.

(3) It shall come into force on such date2 as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976 for “The Untouchability (Offences) Act”.

2. 1st June, 1955.

Section 2. Definitions

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires, –

1[(a) “Civil rights” means any rights accruing to a person by reason of the abolition of “Untouchability” by article 17 of the Constitution;]

2[(aa) “Hotel” includes a refreshment room, a boarding house, a lodging house, a coffee house and a cafe;

3[(b) “Place” includes a house, building and other structure and premises, and also includes a tent, vehicle and vessel;]

(c) “Place of public entertainment” includes any place to which the public are admitted and in which as entertainment is provided or held.

Explanation-”Entertainment” includes any exhibition, performance, game, sport and any other form of amusement;

(d) “Place of public worship” means a place, by whatever name known, which is used as a place of public religious worship or which is dedicated generally to, or is used generally by persons professing any religion or belonging to any religious denomination or any section thereof, for the performance of any religious service, or for offering prayers therein 4[and includes-

(i) All lands and subsidiary shrines appurtenant or attached to any such place:

(ii) A privately owned place of worship which is, fact, allowed by the owner thereof to be used as a place of public worship; and

(iii) Such land or subsidiary shrine appurtenant to such privately owned place, of worship as is allowed by the owner thereof to be used as a place of public religious worship;]

5[(da) “Prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(db) “Scheduled Castes” has the meaning assigned to it in clause (24) of article 366 of the Constitution;]

(e) “Shop” means any premises where goods are sold either wholesale or by retail or both wholesale and by retail 4[and includes-

(i) Any place from where goods are sold by a hawker or vendor or from a mobile van or cart;

(ii) A laundry and a hair cutting saloon;

(iii) Any other place where services are rendered to customers].

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1. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

2. Clause (a) relettered u clause (aa) by Act No. 106 of 1976.

3. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976 for clause (b).

4. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

5. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 3. Punishment for enforcing religious disabilities

Whoever on the ground of “untouchability” prevents any person-

(a) From entering any place of public worship which is open to other persons professing the same religion 1[* * *] or any section thereof, as such person, or

(b) From worshipping or offering prayers or performing any religious service in any place of public worship, or bathing in, or using the waters of, any sacred tank, well, spring or water course 2[rivers or lake or bathing at any ghat of such tank, water-course, river or lake] in the same manner and to the same extent as is permissible to the other persons professing the same religion 1[* * *] or any section thereof, as such person. 2[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a team of not less than one month and not more than six months and also with fine which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees].

Explanation. -For the purposes of this section and Section 4 persons professing the Buddhist, Sikh or Jaina religion or persons professing the Hindu religion in any of its forms or development including Virashaivas, Lingayats, Adivassis, followers of Brahmo, Prarthana, Arya Samaj and the Swaminaryan Sampraday shall be deemed to be Hindus.

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1. Certain words omitted by Act No. 106 of 1976.

2. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 4. Punishment for enforcing social disabilities

Whoever on the ground of untouchability” enforces against any person any disability with regard to-

(i) Access to any shop, public restaurant, hotel or place of public entertainment; or

(ii) The use of any utensils, and other articles kept in any public restaurant, hotel, dharmshala, sarai or musafirkhana for the use of the general public or of 1[any section thereof]; or

(iii) The practice of any profession or the carrying on of any occupation, trade or business 2[or employment in any job]; or

(iv) The use of, or access to, any river, stream, spring, well, tank, cistern, water-tap or other watering place, or any bathing ghat, burial or cremation ground, any sanitary convenience, any road, or passage, or any other place or public resort which other members of the public or 1[any section thereof] have a right to sue or have access to; or

(v) The use of, or access to, any place used for a charitable or a public purpose maintained wholly or partly out of State funds or dedicated to the use of the general public or 1[any section thereof; or

(vi) The enjoyment of any benefit under a charitable trust created for the benefit of the general public or of 1[any section thereof]; or

(vii) The use of, or access to, any public conveyance; or

(viii) The construction, acquisition, or occupation of any residential premises in any locality, whatsoever; or

(ix) The use of any dharamshala, sarai or musafirkhana which is open to the general public or to 1[any section thereof]; or

(x) The, observance of any social or religious custom, usage or ceremony or 3[taking part in, or taking out, any religious, social or cultural procession]; or (xi) The use of jewellery and finery,

4[Shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than one month and not more than six months and also with fine, which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees.

Explanation. -For the purposes of this section, “enforcement of any disability” includes any discrimination on the ground of “untouchability”.]

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976, for certain words.

2. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

3. Subs. for ‘Taking part in any religious procession” by Act No. 106 of 1976.

4. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 5. Punishment for refusing to admit person to hospitals, etc

Whoever on the grounds of “untouchability”. –

(a) Refuses admission to any person to any hospital, dispensary, educational institution or any hostel 1[* * *] if such hospital, dispensary, educational institution or hostel is established or maintained for the benefit of the general public or any section thereof-, or

(b) Does any act which discriminates against any such person after admission to any of the aforesaid institutions, 2[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than one months and not more than six months and also with fine which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees.]

——————–

1. Certain Words omitted by Act No. 106 of 1976.

2. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 6. Punishment for refusing to sell goods or render services

Whoever on the ground of “untouchability” refuses to sell any goods or refuses to render any service to any person at the same time and place and on the same terms and conditions at or which such goods are sold or service are rendered to other persons in the ordinary course of business 1[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than one month and not more than six months and also with fine which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees].

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 7. Punishment for other offences arising out of “untouchability”

(1) Whoever. –

(a) Prevents any person from exercising any right accruing to him by reason of the abolition of “untouchability” under article 17 of the Constitution; or

(b) Molests, injures, annoys, obstructs or causes or attempts to cause obstruction to any person in the exercise of any such right or molests, injures, annoys or boycotts any person by reason of his giving exercised any such right; or

(c) By words, either spoken or written, or by signs or by visible representations or otherwise, incites or encourages any person or class of persons or the public generally to practice “untouchability” in any form whatsoever; 1[or]

2[(d) Insults or attempts to insult, on the ground of “untouchability” a member of Scheduled Caste,]

2[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than one month and not more than six months, and also with fine which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees.]

3[Explanation 1]. – A person shall be deemed to boycott another person who

(a) Refuses to let to such other person or refuses to permit such other person, to use or occupy any house or land or refuses to deal with, work for hire for or do business with, such other person or to render to him or receive from him any customary service, or refuses to do any of the said things on the terms on which such things would be commonly done in the ordinary course of business; or

(b) Abstains from such social, professional or business relations, as he would ordinarily maintain with such other person.

1[Explanation II. -For the purpose of clause (c) a person shall be deemed to incite or encourage the practice of “untouchability”. –

(i) If he, directly or indirectly, preaches “untouchability” or its practice in any form; or

(ii) If he justifies, whether on historical, philosophical or religious grounds or on the ground of any tradition of the caste system or on any other ground, the practice of “untouchability” in any form.]

2[(1A) Whoever commits any offence against the person or property of any individual as a reprisal or revenge for his having exercised any right accruing to him by reason of the abolition, of “untouchability” under article 17 of the Constitution, shall, where the offence is punishable with imprisonment for a term exceeding two years, be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than two years and also with fine.]

(2) Whoever. –

(i) Denies to any person belonging to his community or any section thereof any right or privilege to which such person would be entitled as a member of such community or section, or

(ii) Takes any part in the excommunication of such person, on the ground that such person has refused to practise “untouchability” that such person has done any act in furtherance of the objects of this Act, 2[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term of not less than one month and not more than six months, and also with fine which shall be not less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees.

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1. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

2. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

3. Renumbered as Explanation I by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 7 A. Unlawful compulsory labour when to be deemed to be a practice of untouchability”

1[Unlawful compulsory labour when to be deemed to be a practice of untouchability”. (1) Whoever compels any person, on the ground of “untouchability”, to do any scavenging or sweeping or to remove any carcass or to flay any animal, or to remove the umbilical cord or to do any other job of a similar nature shall be deemed to have enforced a disability arising out of “untouchability”.

(2) Whoever is deemed under sub-section (1) to have enforced a disability arising out of “untouchability” shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which shall not be less than three months and not more than six months and also with fine which shall not be less than one hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees.

Explanation. -For the purposes of this section, “compulsion” includes a threat of social or economic boycott.]

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1. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 8. Cancellation or suspension of Licences in certain cases

When a person who is convicted of an offence under Section 6 holds any licence under any law for the time being in force in respect of any profession, trade, calling or employment in relation to which the offence is committed, the court trying the offence may without prejudice to any other penalty to which such person may be liable under that section, direct that the licence shall stand cancelled or be suspended for such period as the court may deem fit, and every order of the court so canceling or suspending a licence shall have effect as if it had been passed by the authority competent to cancel or suspend the licence under any such law.

Explanation. -In this section, “licence” includes a permit or a permission,

Section 9. Resumption or suspension of grants made by Government

Where the manager or trustee of a place of public worship 1[or any educational institution or hostel] which is in receipt of a grant of land or money from the Government is convicted of an offence under this Act and such conviction is not reversed or quashed in any appeal or revision, the Government may, if in its opinion the circumstances of the case warrant such a course, direct the suspension or resumption of the whole or any part of such grant.

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1. Ins. by Act. No. 106 of 1976.

Section 10. Abetement of offence

Whoever abets any offence under this Act shall be punishable with the punishment provided for the offence.

1[Explanation. -A public servant who wilfully neglects the investigation of any offence punishable under this Act shall be deemed to have abetted an offence punishable under this Act.]

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1. Ins. by Act. No. 106 of 1976.

Section 10 A. Power of State Government to impose collective fine

1[Power of State Government to impose collective fine. (1) If, after an inquiry in the prescribed manner, the State Government is satisfied that the inhabitants of an area are concerned in, or abetting the commission of, any offence punishable under this Act, or harbouring persons concerned in the commission of such offence or failing to render all the assistance in their power to discover or apprehend the offender or offenders or suppressing material evidence of the commission of such offence, the State Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, impose a collective fine on such inhabitants and apportion such fine amongst the inhabitants who are liable collectively to pay it, and such apportionment shall be made according to the State Government’s judgment of the respective means of such inhabitants and in making any such apportionment the State Government may assign a portion of such fine to a Hindu undivided family to be payable by it:

Provided that the fine apportioned to an inhabitant shall not be realised until the petition, if any denied by him under sub- section (3), is disposed of.

(2) The notification made under subsection (1) shall be proclaimed in the area by beat of drum or in such other manner as the State Government may think best in the circumstances to bring the imposition of the collective fine to the notice of the inhabitants of the said area.

(3)

(a) Any person aggrieved by the imposition of the collective fine under subsection (I) or by the order of apportionment, may, within the prescribed period, file a petition before the State Government or such other authority as that Government may specify in this behalf for being exempted from such fine or for modification of the order or apportionment:

Provided that no fee shall be charged for filing such petition

(b) The State Government or the authority specified by it shall, after giving to the petitioner a reasonable opportunity of being heard, pass such order as it may think fit:

Provided that the amount of the fine exempted or reduced under this section shall not be realizable from any person, and the total fine imposed on the inhabitants of an area under subsection (1) shall be deemed to have been reduced to that extent.

(4) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (3), the State Government may exempt the victims of any offence punishable under this Act or any person who does not, in its opinion, fall within the category of persons specified in sub-section (1) from the liability to pay the collective fine imposed under sub-section (1) or any portion thereof.

(5) The portion of collective fine payable by any person (including a Hindu undivided family may be recovered in the manner provided by the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974) for the recovery of fines imposed by a Court as if such portion were a fine imposed by a Magistrate.]

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1. Ins. by Act. No. 106 of 1976.

Section 11. Enhanced penalty on subsequent conviction

Whoever having already been convicted of an offence under this Act or of an abatement of such offence is again convicted of any such offence or abetment, 1[shall, on conviction, be punishable. –

(a) For the second offence, with imprisonment for a term of not less than six months and not more than one year, and also with fine which shall be not less than two hundred rupees and not more than five hundred rupees;

(b) For the third offence or any offence subsequent to the third offence with imprisonment for a term of not less than one year and not more than two years, and also with fine which shall be not less than five hundred rupees and not more than one thousand rupees.]

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976, for certain words.

Section 12. Presumption by Courts in certain cases

Where any act constituting an offence under the Act is committed in relation to a member of a Scheduled Castle 1[***] the Court shall presume, unless the contrary is proved, that such act was committed on the ground of “untouchability”.

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1. Certain words omitted by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 13. Limitation of jurisdiction of Civil Courts

(1) No Civil Court shall entertain or continue any suit or proceeding or shall pass any decree or order if the claim involved in such suit or proceeding or if the passing of such decree or order or if such execution would in any way contrary to the provisions of this Act.

(2) No Court shall, in adjudicating any matter or executing any decree or order, recognize any custom or usage imposing any disability on any person on the ground of “untouchability”.

Section 14. Offences by Companies

(1) If the person committing an offence under this Act is a company, every person who at the time the offence was committed was in charge of, and was responsible to the company for the conduct of the business of the company, shall be deemed to be guilty of the offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly:

Provided that nothing contained in this subsection shall render any such person liable to any punishment, if he proves that the offence was committed without his knowledge or that he exercised all due diligence to prevent the commission of such offence.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in subsection (1) where an offence under this Act has been committed with the consent of any director or manager, secretary or other officer of the company, such director manager, secretary or other officer shall also be deemed to be guilty of that offence and shall be liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly. –

Explanation. -For the purposes of this section. –

(a) “Company” means any body corporate and includes a firm or other association of individuals; and

(b) “Director” in relation to a firm means a partner in the firm.

Section 14 A. Protection of action taken in good faith

1[Protection of action taken in good faith. (1) No suit, prosecution or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Central Government or a State Government for anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done under this Act.

(2) No suit or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Central Government or a, State Government for any damage caused or likely to be caused by anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done under this Act.]

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1. Ins. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 15. Offences to be cognizable and triable summarily

1[Offences to be cognizable and triable summarily. (1) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974), every offence punishable under this Act shall be cognizable and every such offence, except where it is punishable with imprisonment for a minimum term exceeding three months, may be tried summarily by a Judicial Magistrate of the First Class or in a metropolitan area by a Metropolitan Magistrate in accordance with the procedure specified in the said code.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974), when any public servant is alleged to have committed the offence of abetment of an offence punishable under this Act, while acting or purporting to act in the discharge of his official duty, no Court shall take cognizance of such offence of abetment except with the previous sanction. –

(a) Of the Central Government, in the case of a person employed in connection with the affairs of the Union; and

(b) Of the State Government, in the case of a person employed in connection with the affairs of a State.

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1. Subs. by Act No. 106 of 1976.

Section 15 A. Duty of State Government to ensure that the rights accruing from the abolition of “untouchability” may be availed of by the concerned person

(1) Subject to such rules as the Central Government may make in this behalf, the State Government shall take such measures as may be necessary for ensuring that the rights arising from the abolition of “untouchability” are made available to, and are availed of by the persons subjected to any disability arising out of “untouchability”.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the provisions of subsection (1), such measures may include. –

(i) The provision of adequate facilities, including legal aid, to the persons subjected to any disability arising out of “untouchability” to enable them to avail themselves of such rights;

(ii) The appointment of officers for initiating or exercising supervision over prosecutions for the contravention of the provisions of this Act;

(iii) The setting tip of special courts for the trial of offences under this Act;

(iv) The setting up of Committees at such appropriate levels as the State Government may think fit to assist the State Government in formulating or implementing such measures;

(v) Provision for a periodic survey of the working of the provisions of this Act with a view to suggesting measures for the better implementation of the provisions of this Act;

(vi) The identification of the areas where persons are under any disability arising out of “untouchability” and adoption of such measures as would ensure the removal of such disability form such areas.

(3) The Central Government shall take such steps as may be necessary to co-ordinate the measures taken by the State Government under sub-section (1).

(4) The Central Government shall, every year, place on the Table of each House of Parliament a report on the measures taken by itself and by the State Governments in pursuance of the provision of this section.]

Section 16. Act to override other laws

Save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, the provision of this Act shall have effect notwithstanding any thing inconsistent therewith contained in any other law for the time being in force, or any custom or usage or any instrument having effect by virtue of any such law or any decree or order of any Court or other authority.

Section 16 A. Probation of Offenders Act, 1958, not to apply to persons above the age of fourteen years

1[Probation of Offenders Act, 1958, not to apply to persons above the age of fourteen years. The provisions of the Probation of Offenders Act, 1958 (20 of 1958), shall not apply to any person above the age of fourteen years who is found guilty committed any offence punishable under this Act.

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1. Ins. by Act. No. 106 of 1976.

Section 16 B. Power to make rules

(1) The Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) Every rule made by the Central Government under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament while it is in session for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the rule or both Houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.]

Section 17. Repeal

The enactments specified in the Schedule are hereby repealed to the extent to which they or any of the provisions contained therein correspond or are repugnant to this Act or to any of the provisions contained therein.

Schedule

(See Section 17)

1. The Bihar Harijan (Removal of Civil Disabilities) Act, 1949 (Bihar Act XIX of 1949).

2. The Bombay Harijan (Removal of Social Disabilities) Act, 1946 (Bombay Act X of 1947).

3. The Bombay Harijan Temple Entry Act, 1947 (Bombay Act XXXV of 1947).

4. The Central Provinces and Berar Scheduled Castes (Removal of Civil Disabilities) Act, 1947 (Central Provinces and Berar Act XXIV of 1947).

5. The Central Provinces and Berar Temple Entry Authorisation Act, 1947 (Central Provinces and Berar Act, XLI of 1947).

6. The East Punjab (Removal of Religious and Social Disabilities) Act, 1948 (East Punjab Act XVI of 1948).

7. The Madras Removal of Civil Disabilities Act, 1938 (Madras Act XXI of 1938).

8. The Orissa Removal Of Civil Disabilities Act, 1946 (Orissa Act XI of 1946).

9. The Orissa Temple Entry Authorisation Act, 1948 (Orissa Act XI of 1948).

10. The United Provinces Removal of Social Disabilities Act, 1947 (U.P. Act XIV Of 1947).

11. The West Bengal Hindu Social Disabilities Removal Act, 1948 (West Bengal Act XXXVII of 1948).

12. The Hyderabad Harijan Temple Entry Regulations, 1358 F (No. LV of 1358 Fasli).

13. The Hyderabad Harijan (Removal Of Social Disabilities) Regulation, 1358 F (No. LVI of 1385 Fasli).

14. The Madhya Bharat Harijan Ayogta Nivaran Vidhan, Samvat 2005 (Madhya Bharat Act No. 15 Of 1949).

15. The Removal of Civil Disabilities Act, 1943 (Mysore Act XLII of 1943).

16. The Mysore Temple Entry Authorisation Act, 1948 (Mysore Act XIV of 1948).

17. The Saurashtra Harijan (Removal Of Social Disabilities) Ordinance (No. XL of 1948).

18. The Travancore Cochin Removal of Social Disabilities Act, 1125K (Travancore Cochin Act VIII of 1125).

19. The Travancore-Cochin Temple Entry (Removal of Disabilities) Act, 1950 (Travancore-Cochin Act XXVII of 1950).

20. The Coorg Scheduled Castes (Removal of Civil and Social Disabilities) Act, 1949 (Coorg Act I of 1949).

21. The Coorg Temple Entry Authorisation Act, 1949 (Coorg Act 11 of 1949),

Bydeb

The Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993

(Act No. 10 of 1994)

[8th January 1994]

An act To provide for the constitution of a National Human Rights Commission, State Human Rights Commissions in States and Human Rights Courts for better protections of human rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

Be it enacted by Parliament in the forty-fourth year of the Republic of India as follows:

Section 1. Short title, extend and commencement

(1) This Act may be called the protection Human Rights Act, 1993.

(2) It extends to the whole of India.

(3) It shall be deemed to have come in to force on the 28th day of September 1993.

Section 2. Definitions

(1) In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires, –

(a) “Armed forces” means the naval, military and Air forces and includes any other armed forces of the union;

(b) “Chairperson” means the Chairperson of the Commission or of the state Commission, as the case may be;

(c) “Commission” means the National Human Rights Commission constituted under Section-3

 (d) “Human rights” means the rights relating to life, liberty, equality and dignity of the individual guaranteed by the constitution of embodied in the international covenants and enforce able by courts in India;

(e) “Human Rights Court” means the Human Rights Court Specified under section 30;

1[(f) International Covenants” means the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenants on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on the 16th December, 1966 and such other Covenant or Convention adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations as the Central Government may, by notification, specify]

2[(g) “Member” means a Member of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be.]

(h) “National Commission For Minorities” means of the National Commission for Minorities constituted under section 3 of the National Commission for Minorities Act, 1992;

3[(i) (i) “National Commission for the Scheduled Castes” means the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes referred to in Article 338 of the Constitution;

(i-a) “National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes” means the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes referred to in Article 338-A of the Constitution;]

(j) “National Commission For Women” means the National Commission for Women Constituted under Section 3 of the National Commission for Women Act, 1990;

(k) “Notification” means a notification published in the Official Gazettee”

(l) “Prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act`

(m) “ Public servant” shall have the meaning assigned to it in section 21 of the Indian Penal Code;

(n) “State Commission” means a State Human Rights Commission constituted under section 21.

(2) Any reference in this Act of Law, which is not in force in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, in relation to that State, be construed as a reference to a corresponding law, if any, in force in that State.

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

3. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 3. Constitution of a National Human Rights Commission

(1) The Central Government shall constitute a body to be known State of Jammu and Kashmir, shall in relation to that State, be conferred upon, and to perform the functions assigned to, it under this act.

(2) The Commission shall consist of.

(a) A Chairperson who has been a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court;

(b) One Member who is, or has been, a Judge of the Supreme Court;

(c) One Member who is, or has been, the Chief Justice of a High Court;

(d) Two members to be appointed from amongst persons having knowledge of, or practical experience in, matters relating to human rights.

(3) The Chairperson of the National Commission for Minorities, 1[the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes, the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes] and the National Commission for Women shall be deemed to be Members of the Commission for the discharge of functions specified in clauses (b) to (j) of Section 12.

(4) There shall be a Secretary- General who shall be the Chief- Executive Officer of the Commission and shall exercise such powers and discharge such functions of the Commission 2[(except judicial functions and the power to make regulations under Section 40-B) as may be delegated to him by the Commission or the Chairperson, as the case may be].

(5) The Headquarters of the Commission shall be at the Delhi and the Commission may, with the previous approval of the Central Government, establish offices at other places in India.

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. The Words “as it may delegate to him” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 4. Appointment of Chairperson and other Members

(1) The Chairperson and 1[the Members] shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal:

Provided that every appointment under this Sub-Section shall be made of a Committee consisting of

(a) The Prime Minister – Chairperson;

(b) Speaker of the House of the People -Member;

(c) Minister in– charge of the Minister of the Home affairs in the Govt. of India -member;

(d) Leader of the Opposition in the House of the People-member;

(e) Leader of the Opposition in the Council of States-member;

(f) Deputy Chairman of the Council of States -member;

Provided further that no sitting Judge of the Supreme Court or sitting Chief Justice of a High Court shall be appointed except after consultation with the chief Justice of India.

(2) No Appointment of a chairperson or a member shall be invalid merely by reason of any 2[vacancy of any member in the Committee referred to in the first proviso to sub-section (1)]

——————–

1. The words “othrer Members” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. The words “vacancy in the Committee” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 5. Resignation and removal of Chairperson and Members

1[Resignation and removal of Chairperson and Members. (1) The Chairperson or any Member may, by notice in writing under his hand addressed to the President of India, resign his office.

(2) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (3), the Chairperson or any Member shall only be removed from his office by order of the President of India on the ground of proved Misbehaviour or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on reference being made to it by the President, has, on inquiry held in accordance with the procedure prescribed in that behalf by the Supreme Court, reported that the Chairperson or the Member, as the case may be, ought on any such ground to be removed.

(3) Notwithstanding anything in sub-section (2), the President may, by order, remove from office the Chairperson or any Member if the Chairperson or such Member, as the case may be,-

(a) is adjudged an insolvent; or

(b) engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or

(c) is unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body; or

(d) is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; or

(e) is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence which in the opinion of the President involves moral turpitude.]

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 6. Term of office of Chairperson and Members

1[Term of office of Chairperson and Members. (1) A person appointed as Chairperson shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office or until he attains the age of seventy years, whichever is earlier.

(2) A person appointed as a Member shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office and shall be eligible for re-appointment for another term of five years :

Provided that no Member shall hold office after he has attained the age of seventy years.

(3) On ceasing to hold office, a Chairperson or a Member shall be ineligible for further employment under the Government of India or under the Government of any State.]

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 7. Member to act as chairperson or to discharge his functions in certain circumstances

(1) In the event of the occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the chairperson by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, the President may, by notification, authorise one of the Members to act as the Chairperson until the appointments of a new Chairperson to fill such vacancy.

(2) When the Chairperson is unable to discharge his functions owing to absence on leave or otherwise, such one of the Member as the President may, by notification, authorise in this behalf, shall discharge the functions of the chairpersons until the date on which the Chairperson resumes his duties.

Section 8. Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members

1[Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members. The salaries and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed :

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.”.

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 9. Vacancies, etc., not to invalidate the proceedings of the Commissions

No act or proceedings of the Commission shall be questioned or shall be invalidated merely on the ground of existence of any vacancy or defect in the constitution of the Commission.

Section 10. Procedure to be regulated by the Commission

(1) The commission shall meet at such time and placed as the Chairperson may think fit.

1[(2) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the rules made there under, the Commission shall have the power to lay down by regulations its own procedure.]

(3) All orders and decisions of the Commissions shall be authenticated by the Secretary General or any other officer of the Commission duly authorised by the Chairperson in this behalf.

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 11. Officers and other staff of the Commission

(1) The Central Government shall make available to the Commission –

(a) An Officer of the rank of the Secretary to the Government of India who shall be the Secretary General of the commission: and

(b) Such police and investigative staff under an officer not below the rank of a Director General of Police and such other officers and staff as may be necessary for the efficient performance of the functions of the Commissions.

(2) Subject to such rules as may be made by the Central Government in this behalf, the Commission may appoint such other administrative, technical and scientific staff as it may consider necessary.

(3) The salaries, allowances and conditions of service of the officers and other staff appointed under sub-section (2) shall be such as may be prescribed.

Section 12. Functions and Powers of The Commission

The Commission shall perform all or any of the following functions, namely:

(a) Inquire, suo-motu or on a petition presented to it by a victim or any person on his behalf 1[or on a direction or order of any court], into complaint of –

(i) Violation of human rights or abetment there of; or

(ii) Negligence in the prevention of such violation by a public servant;

(b) Intervene in any proceeding involving any allegation of violation of human rights pending before a court with the approval of such court;

2[(c) visit, notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, any jail or other institution under the control of the State Government, where persons are detained or lodged for purposes of treatment, reformation or protection, for the study of the living conditions of the inmates thereof and make recommendations thereon to the Government;]

(d) Review the safe guards provided by or under the Constitution or any law the time being enforce for the protection of human rights and recommend measures for there effective implementation;

(e) Review the factors, including acts of terrorism, that inhabit the enjoyment of human rights and recommend appropriate remedial measures;

(f) Study of treaties and other international instrument on human rights and make the recommendations for their effective implementation;

(g) Undertake and promote research in the field of human rights;

(h) Spread human rights literacy among various section of society and promote the awareness of the safeguards available for the protection of these rights through publication, the media, seminar and other available means;

(i) Encourage the efforts of non-governmental organisations and institutions working in the field of human rights;

(j) Such other functions as it may consider necessary for the promotion of human rights.

——————–

1. Ins. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 13. Powers relating to inquiries

(1) The commission shall, while inquiring into complaints under this Act have all the powers of a civil court trying a suit under the code of civil procedure, 1908 and in particular in respect of the following matters, namely:

(a) Summoning and enforcing the attendance of witnesses and examining them on oath;

(b) Discovery and production of any document;

(c) Receiving evidence on affidavits;

(d) Requisitioning any public record or copy thereof from any court or office;

(e) Issuing commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents;

(2) The commission shall have power to require any person, subject to any privilege which may be claimed by that person under any law for the time being in force, to furnish information on such points or matters as, in the opinion of the commission, may be useful for, or relevant to, the subject matter of the inquiry and any person so required shall be deemed to be legally bound to furnish such information within the meaning of section 176 and section 177 of the Indian Panel Code.

(3) The commission or any other officer, not below the rank of a Gazetted officer, specially authorised in this behalf by the commission may enter any building or place where the commission has reason to believe that any document relating to the subject matter of the inquiry may be found, and may seize any such document or take extract or copies therefrom subject provision of section 100 of the code of Criminal procedure, 1973, in so far as it may be applicable.

(4) The Commission shall be deemed to be a civil court and when any offence as is described in section 175, section 178, section 179, section 180 or section 228 of the Indian Panel Code is commuted in the view presence of the commission, the commission may, after recording the facts constituting the offence and the statement of the accused as provide for in the code of criminal procedure, 1973, forward the case to Magistrate having Jurisdiction to try the same and the Magistrate to whom any such case is forwarded shall proceed to hear the complaint against the accused as if the case has been forwarded to him under section 346 of the code of criminal procedure, 1973.

(5) Every proceeding before the Commission shall be deemed to be a judicial proceeding within a the meaning of sections 193 and 228 and for the purposes of section 196, of the Indian Panel Code, and the Commission shall deemed to be a civil court for all the purposes of section 195 and Chapter XXVI of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973.

1[(6) Where the Commission considers it necessary or expedient so to do, it may, by order, transfer any complaint filed or pending before it to the State Commission of the State from which the complaint arises, for disposal in accordance with the provisions of this Act:

Provided that no such complaint shall be transferred unless the same is one respecting which the State Commission has jurisdiction to entertain the same.

(7) Every complaint transferred under sub-section (6) shall be dealt with and disposed of by the State Government as if it were a complaint initially filed before it.]

——————–

1. Inserted by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 14. Investigation

(1) The Commission may, for the purpose of conducting any investigation pertaining to the inquiry, utilize the services of any officer or investigation agency of the Central Government or any State Government with the concurrence of the Central Government, or the State Government as case may be.

(2) For the purpose of instigating into any matter pertaining to the inquiry, any officer or agency whose services are utilized under sub-section (1) may, subject to the direction and control of the Commission, –

(a) Summon and enforce the attendance of any person and examine him;

(b) Require the discovery and production of document; and

(c) Requisition any public record or copy thereof from any office.

(3) The provisions of section 15 shall apply in relation to any statement made by a person before any officer or agency whose service are utilized under sub-section (1) as they apply in relation to any statement made by a person in the course of giving evidence before the Commission.

(4) The officer or agency whose services are utilized under sub-section (1) shall investigate into any matter pertaining to the inquiry and submit a report thereon to the Commission within such period as may be specified by the Commission in this behalf.

(5) The Commission shall satisfy itself about the correctness of the facts stated and the conclusion, if any, arrived at in the court submitted to it under sub-section (4) and for this purpose the Commission may make such inquiry (including the examination of the person or person who conducted to assisted in the investigation) as it thinks fit.

Section 15. Statement made by persons to the Commission

No statement made by a person in the course of giving evidence before Commission shall subject him to, or be used against him in, any civil or criminal proceeding except at prosecution of giving false evidence by such statement:

Provided that the statement –

(a) Is made in reply in to the question which he is required by the Commission to answer; or

(b) Is relevant to the subject matter of the inquiry.

Section 16. Persons likely to be prejudicially affected to be heard

If, at any stage of the inquiry, the Commission-

(a) Considers it necessary to inquiry into the conduct of person; or

(b) Is of the opinion that the reputation of any person is likely to be prejudicially affected by the inquiry;

It shall give to that person a reasonable opportunity of being in heard in the inquiry and to be produce evidence in this defence:

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply where the credit of a witness is being impeached.

Section 17. Inquiry into complaints

The Commission while inquiring into the complaints of violations of human rights may –

(i) Call for information or report from the Central Government or any State Government or any other authority or organisation subordinate thereto within such time as may be specified by it:

Provided that-

(a) If the information or report is not received within the time stipulated by the Commission, it may be proceed to inquire into the complaint on its own;

(b) If, on receipt of information or report, the Commission is satisfied either that no further inquiry is required or that the required action has been initiated or taken by the concerned Government or authority, it may not proceed with the complaint an inform the complainant accordingly;

(ii) Without prejudice to any thing contained in clause (i), if it considers necessary, having regard to the natural of the complaint initiate an inquiry.

Section 18. Steps during and after inquiry

1[Steps during and after inquiry. The Commission may take any of the following steps during or upon the completion of an inquiry held under this Act, namely:-

(a) where the inquiry discloses the commission of violation of human rights or negligence in the prevention of violation of human rights or abetment thereof by a public servant, it may recommend to the concerned Government or authority-

(i) to make payment of compensation or damages to the complainant or to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary;

(ii) to initiate proceedings for prosecution or such other suitable action as the Commission may deem fit against the concerned person or persons;

(iii) to take such further action as it may think fit;

(b) approach the Supreme Court or the High Court concerned for such directions, orders or writs as that Court may deem necessary;

(c) recommend to the concerned Government or authority at any stage of the inquiry for the grant of such immediate interim relief to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary;

(d) subject to the provisions of clause (e), provide a copy of the inquiry report to the petitioner or his representative;

(e) the Commission shall send a copy of its inquiry report together with its recommendations to the concerned Government or authority and the concerned Government or authority shall, within a period of one month, or such further time as the Commission may allow, forward its comments on the report, including the action taken or proposed to be taken thereon, to the Commission;

(f) the Commission shall publish its inquiry report together with the comments of the concerned Government or authority, if any, and the action taken or proposed to be taken by the concerned Government or authority on the recommendations of the Commission.]

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 19. Procedure with respect to armed forces

(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Act, while dealing with complaint violation of human rights by members of the armed forces, the Commission shall adopt the following procedure, namely:

(a) It may, either on its own motion or on receipt of a petition, seek a report from the Central Government;

(b) After the receipt of the report, it may either not proceed with the complaint or, as the case may be, make its recommendations to that Government.

(2) The Central Government shall inform the commission of the action taken on the recommendation within three months or such further time as the Commission may allow.

(3) The Commission shall publish its report together with its recommendations made to the Central Government and the action taken by that Government on such recommendations.

(4) The Commission shall provide a copy of the report published under sub-section (3) to the petitioner or his representative.

Section 20. Annual and special reports of the Commission

(1) The Commission shall submit an annual report to the Central Government and to the State Government concerned and may at any time submit special report on any matter, which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The Central Government and the State Government as the case may be, shall cause the annual and special reports of the Commission to be laid before each House of Parliament or the State Legislature respectively, as the case may be along with a memorandum of action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations of the Commission and the reasons for non-acceptance of the recommendations, if any.

Section 21. Constitution of State Human Rights Commissions

(1) State Government may constitute a body to be known as the………..(name of the state) Human Rights Commission to exercise the powers conferred open, and to perform the functions assigned to, a State Commission under this chapter.

1[(2) The State Commission shall, with effect from such date as the State Government may by notification specify, consist of-

(a) a Chairperson who has been a Chief Justice of a High Court;

(b) one Member who is, or has been, a Judge of a High Court or District Judge in the State with a minimum of seven years experience as District Judge;

(c) one Member to be appointed from among persons having knowledge of or practical experience in matters relating to human rights.]

(3) There shall be a Secretary who shall be the Chief Executive Officer of the State Commission and shall exercise such powers and discharge such functions of the State Commission as it may delegate to him.

(4) The headquarters of the State Commission shall be at such place as the State Government may, by notification, specify.

(5) A State Commission may inquire in to violation of human rights only in respect of matters relatable to any of the entries enumerated in list II and List III in the seventh schedule to the Constitution:

Provided that if any such matter is already being inquired into by the Commission or any other Commission duly constituted under any law for the time being in force, the State commission shall not inquire into the said matter:

Provided further that in relation to the Jammu and Kashmir Human Right Commission, this sub-section shall have effect as if for the words and figures “List II and List III in the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution”, the words and figures “List III in the Seventh Schedule to the Constitution as applicable to the State of Jammu and Kashmir and in respect of matters in relation to which the Legislature of that State has power to make laws” had been substituted..

2[(6) Two or more State Governments may, with the consent of a Chairperson or Member of a State Commission, appoint such Chairperson or, as the case may be, such Member of another State Commission simultaneously if such Chairperson or Member consents to such appointment:

Provided that every appointment made under this sub-section shall be made after obtaining the recommendations of the Committee referred to in subsection (1) of Section 22 in respect of the State for which a common Chairperson or Member, or both, as the case may be, is to be appointed.]

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. Ins. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 22. Appointments of Chairperson and Members of State Commission

Appointments of Chairperson and 1[Members] of State Commission. (1) The Chairperson and 1[Members] shall be appointed by the Governor by warrant under his hand and seal:

Provided that every appointment under this sub-section shall be made after obtaining the recommendation of a Committee consisting of –

(a) The Chief Minister ——–Chairperson:

(b) Speaker of the legislative Assembly——————-member;

(c) Minister in-charge of the Department of Home in that State——-member;

(d) Leader of the opposition in the Legislative Assembly——-member;

Provided also that where there is a Legislative Council in a State, the Chairman of that Council and the Leader of the opposition in that Council shall also be member of the Committee:

Provided also that no sitting Judge of a High Court or a sitting district Judge shall be appointed except after consultation with the Chief Justice of the High Court of the concerned State.

(2) No appointment of a Chairperson or a Member of the State Commission shall be invalid merely by reason of 2[any vacancy of any Member in the Committee referred to in sub-section (1)].

——————–

1. The words “other Members” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. The words “any vacancy in the Committee” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 23. Resignation and Removal of Chairperson or a Member of the State Commission

1[Resignation and Removal of Chairperson or a Member of the State Commission]. 2[(1) The Chairperson or a Member of a State Commission may, by notice in writing under his hand addressed to the Governor, resign his office.

(1-A) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (2), the Chairperson or any Member of the State Commission shall only be removed from his office by order of the President on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on a reference being made to it by the President, has, on inquiry held in accordance with the procedure prescribed in that behalf by the Supreme Court, reported that the Chairperson or such Member, as the case may be, ought on any such ground to be removed.]

(2) Notwithstanding anything in 3[sub-section (1-A)] the President may by order remove from office the Chairperson or any 4[Member] if the Chairperson or such 4[Member], as the case may be-

(a) Is adjudged an insolvent; or

(b) Engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or

(c) Is unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body; or

(d) Is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; or

(e) Is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence which in the opinion of the President involves moral turpitude.

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

2. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

3. The words “sub-section (1) subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

4. The words “other members” subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 24. Term of office of Chairperson and Members of the State Commission

1[Term of office of Chairperson and Members of the State Commission. (1) A person appointed as Chairperson shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office or until he attains the age of seventy years, whichever is earlier.

(2) A person appointed as a Member shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office shall be eligible for re-appointment for another term of five years :

Provided that no Member shall hold office after he has attained the age of seventy years.

(3) On ceasing to hold office, a Chairperson or a Member shall be ineligible for further employment under the Government of a State or under the Government of India].

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 25. Member to act as Chairperson or to discharge his functions in certain circumstances

(1) In the event of the occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the Chairperson by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, the Governor may, by notification, authorise one of the Member to act as the Chairperson until the appointment of a new Chairperson to fill such vacancy.

(2) When the Chairperson is unable to discharge his functions owing to absence on leave or otherwise, such one of the Members as the Governor may, by notification, authorise in this behalf, shall discharge the functions of the Chairperson until the date on which the Chairperson resumes his duties.

Section 26. Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members of State Commissions

1[Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members of State Commissions. The salaries and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.]

——————–

1. Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 27. Officers and other staff of the State Commission

(1) The State Government shall make available to the Commission-

(a) An officer not below the rank of a secretary to the State Government who shall be the Secretary of the State Commission; and

(b) Such police and investigative staff under an officer not below the rank of an Inspector General of police and such other officers and staff as may be necessary for the efficient performance of the functions of the State Commission.

(2) Subject to such rules as may be made by the State Government in this behalf, the State Commission may appoint such administrative technical and scientific staff as it may consider necessary.

(3) The salaries, allowances and conditions of service of the officers and other staff appointed under sub- section (2) shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government.

Section 28. Annual and Special report of State Commission

(1) The State Commission shall submit an annual report to the State Government and may at any time submit special reports on any matter, which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The State Government shall cause the annual and special reports of the State Commission to be laid before each House of State Legislature where it consists of two Houses, or where such Legislature consists of one House, before that House along with a memorandum of action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations of the State Commission and the reasons for non-acceptance of the recommendations, if any.

Section 29. Application of certain provisions relating to National Rights Commission to State Commissions

The provisions of sections 9, 10, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 and 18 shall apply to a State Commission and shall have effect, subject to the following modifications, namely:

(a) Reference to “Commission” shall be construed as references to “state Commission”;

(b) In section 10, in sub-section (3), for the word “Secretary-General”, the word “Secretary” shall be substituted;

(c) In section 12, clause (f) shall be omitted;

(d) In section 17, in clause (i), the words “Central Government or any” shall be omitted.

Section 30. Human Rights Courts

For the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences arising out of violation of human rights, the State Government may, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the High Court, by notification, specify for each district a Court of Session to be a Human Rights Courts to try the said offences:

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply if—

(a) A Court of Session is already specified as a special court; or

(b) A special court is already constituted,

For such offences under any other law for the time being in force.

Section 31. Special Public Prosecutor

For every Human: Rights Court, the State Government shall, by notification, specify a Public Prosecutor or appoint an advocate who has been in practice as an advocate for not less than seven years, as a Special Public Prosecutor for the purpose of conducting cases in that court.

Section 32. Grants by the Central Government

(1) The Central Government shall, after due appropriation made by Parliament by law in this behalf, pay to the Commission by way of grants such sums of money as the Central Government may think fit for being utilized for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The Commission may spend such sums as it thinks fit for performing the functions under this Act and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants Referred to in sub-section (1).

Section 33. Grants by the State Government

(1) The State Government shall, after due appropriation made by Legislature by law in this behalf, pay to the State Commission by way of grants such of money as the State Government may think fit for being utilized for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The State Commission May spend such sums as it thinks fit for performing the functions under Chapter V, and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1).

Section 34. Accounts and audit

(1) The Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the Central Government in consultation with the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the Commission shall be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the Commission to the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

(3) The Comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the Commission under this act shall have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and auditor-General generally has in connection with the audit of the Government accounts and, in particular, shall have right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the Commission.

(4) The accounts of the Commission as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon shall be forwarded annually to the Central Government by the Commission and the Central Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be, after it is received, before each House of Parliament.

Section 35. Accounts and audit of State Commission

(1) The State Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the State Government in consultation with the comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the State Commission shall be audited by the comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the State Commission to the comptroller and Auditor- General.

(3) The comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the State Commission under this Act shall have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and Auditor –General generally as in connection with the audit of Government accounts and, in particular, shall have the right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the State Commission.

(4) The accounts of the State Commission, as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon, shall be forwarded annually to the State Government by the State Commission and the State Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be, after it is received, before the State Legislature.

Section 36. Matters not Subject to jurisdiction of the Commission

(1) The Commission shall not inquire into any matter which is pending before a State Commission or any other Commission duly constituted under any law for the time being in force.

(2) The Commission or the State Commission shall not inquire into any matter after the expiry of one year from the date on which the act constituting and violation of human rights is alleged to have been committed.

Section 37. Constitution of special investigation teams

Notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being to force, where the Government considers it necessary so to do, it may constitute one or more special investigation teams, consisting of such police officer as it thinks necessary for the purposes of investigation and prosecution of offences arising out of violations of human rights.

Section 38. Protection of action taken in good faith

No suit or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Central Government, State Government, Commission, State Commission or any Member thereof or any person acting under the direction either of the Central Government, State Government, Commission or the State Commission in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done in pursuance of this Act or of any rules or any order made thereunder or in respect of the publication by or under the authority of the Central Government, State Government Commission or the State Commission of any report, paper of proceedings.

Section 39. Members and officers to be public servants

Every Member of the Commission, State Commission and every officer appointed or authorised by the Commission or the State Commission to exercise functions under this Act shall be deemed to be a public servant within the meaning of section 21 of the Indian Penal Code.

Section 40. Power of Central Government to make rules

(1) The Central Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:

(a) The salaries and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of the 1[Chairperson and Members] under section 8;

(b) The conditions subject to which other administrative, technical and scientific staff may be appointed by the Commission and the salaries and allowances of officers and other staff under sub-section (3) of section 11;

(c) Any other power of a civil court required to be prescribed under clause (f) of sub-section (1) of section 13;

(d) The form in which in the annual Statement of accounts is to be prepared by the Commission under sub-section (1) of section 34; and

(e) Any other matter which has to be, or may be, prescribed.

(3) Every rule made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both House agree in making any modification in the rule of both House agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be ; so however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.

——————–

1. The Words “Members” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 40 A. Power to make rules retrospectively

1[Power to make rules retrospectively. The power to make rules under clause (b) of sub-section (2) of section 40 shall include the power to make such rules or any of them retrospectively from a date not earlier than the date of which this act received the assent of the President, but no such retrospective effect shall be given to any such rule so as to prejudicially affect the interests of any persons to whom such rule may be applicable.

——————–

1. Inserted by Act, 49 of 2000, sec. 2. (w.e.f. 11-12-2000)

Section 40 B. Power of Commission to make regulations

1[Power of Commission to make regulations. (1) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the rules made there under, the Commission may, with the previous approval of the Central Government, by notification, make regulations to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such regulations may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) the procedure to be followed by the Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 10;

(b) the returns and statistics to be furnished by the State Commissions;

(c) any other matter which has to be, or may be, specified by regulations.

(3) Every regulation made by the Commission under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the regulation or both Houses agree that the regulation should not be made, the regulation shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that regulation.]

——————–

1. Inserted by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 41. Power of State Government to make rules

(1) The State Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely, –

(a) The salaries and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of the 1[Chairperson and Members] under section 26;

(b) The conditions subject to which other administrative, technical and scientific staff may be appointed by the State Commission and the salaries and allowances of offices and other staff under sub-section (3) of section 27;

(c) The form in which the annual Statement of accounts is to be prepared under sub-section (1) of section 35.

(3) Every rule made by the State Government under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House or the State legislature where it consists of two Houses, or where such Legislature consists of one House, before that House.

——————–

1. The words “Members” Subs. by Act No. 43 of 2006 w.e.f. 13-9-2006.

Section 42. Power to remove difficulties

(1) If any difficulty arises in giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government may, by order, published in the official Gazette, make such provisions, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act as appear to it to be necessary or expedient for removing the difficulty:

Provided that no such order shall be made after the expiry of the period of two years from the date of commencement of this Act.

(2) Every order made under this section shall, as soon as may be after it is made, be laid before each House of Parliament.

Section 43. Repeal and savings

(1) The Protection of Human Rights Ordinance 1993 is hereby repealed.

(2) Notwithstanding such repeal anything done or any action taken under the said Ordinance shall be deemed to have been done or taken under the corresponding provisions of this Act.

Bydeb

Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Act, 2006

Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Act, 2006

February 27, 20130257

PROTECTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS (AMENDMENT) ACT, 20061

[No. 43 OF 2006]

[September 13, 2006]

An Act further to amend the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fifty-seventh Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

——————–

1. Received the assent of the President on September 13, 2006 and published in & : Gazette of India, Extra., Part II, Section 1.

Prefatory Note-Statement of Objects and Reasons.-The National Human Rights Commission was set up in October, 1993 under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 for promotion and better protection of human rights. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) set up an advisory Committee under the Chairmanship of Justice A.H. Ahmedi, former Chief Justice of India to assess the need for amendments to the Act. Based on the recommendations of the Justice Ahmedi Committee, the NHRC has suggested various amendments to the said Act. The various amendments proposed by the NHRC and certain other issues relating to the scope and ambit of the Act have been examined and it has been decided to amend the Act.

2. The Bill, inter alia, seeks to-

(a) clarify that the Chairpersons of NHRC and State Human Rights Commission (SHRCs) are distinct from the Members of the respective Commission;

(b) make judges of the Supreme Court with at least three years service as such to be eligible to be appointed as the Chairperson of the NHRC.

(c) make judges of the High Courts with at least five years of service as such to be eligible to be appointed as Chairperson of the SHRCs and a District Judge with at least seven years of experience in that capacity to be a Member of the SHRC;

(d) enable the NHRC to transfer complaints received by it to the concerned SHRC;

(e) enable the NHRC to visit any jail or detention centre without prior intimation to the State Government;

(f) Enable the Chairperson and Members of the NHRC to address their resignations in writing to the President and the Chairperson and Members of the SHRCs to the Governor of the State concerned;

(g) clarify that the absence of any member in the Selection Committee for selection of the Chairperson and Members of the NHRC or the SHRCs will not vitiate the decisions taken by such Committees;

(h) enable the NHRC and the SHRCs to make interim recommendations during an inquiry;

(i) empower the NHRC and its Chairperson to delegate certain powers and functions of the Commission to the Secretary-General of the NHRC;

(j) provide that the Chairperson of the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes and the Chairperson of the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes shall be deemed to be Members of the NHRC;

(k) enable the Central Government to notify future international covenants and conventions to which the Act would be applicable.

3. The Bill seeks to achieve the above objects.

Section 1. Short title and commencement

(1) This Act may be called the Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Act, 2006.

(2) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

Section 2. Amendment of Section 2

In Section 2 of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 (10 of 1994) (hereinafter referred to as the principal Act), in sub-section (1),-

(a) for clause (f), the following clause shall be substituted, namely:-

“(f) “International Covenants” means the International Covenants on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenants on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on the 16th December, 1966 and such other Covenant or Convention adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations as the Central Government may, by notification, specify;”

(b) for clause (g), the following clause shall be substituted, namely:-

‘(g) “Member” means a Member of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be;’;

(c) for clause (i), the following clauses shall be substituted, namely:-

‘(i) “National Commission for the Scheduled Castes” means the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes referred to in Article 338 of the Constitution;

(i-a) “National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes” means the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes referred to in Article 338-A of the Constitution;

Section 3. Amendment of Section 3

In Section 3 of the principal Act,-

(a) in sub-section (3), for the words “the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes”, the words “the National Commission for the Scheduled Castes, the National Commission for the Scheduled Tribes” shall be substituted;

(b) in sub-section (4), for the words “as it may delegate to him”, the brackets, words, figures and letter “(except judicial functions and the power to make regulations under Section 40-B) as may be delegated to him by the Commission or the Chairperson, as the case may be” shall be substituted.

Section 4. Amendment of Section 4

In Section 4 of the principal Act,-

(a) in sub-section (1), for the words “other Members”, the words “the Members” shall be substituted;

(b) in sub-section (2), for the words “vacancy in the Committee”, the words, brackets and figure “vacancy of any member in the Committee referred to in the first proviso to sub-section (1)” shall be substituted.

Section 5. Substitution of new section for Section 5

For Section 5 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“5. Resignation and removal of Chairperson and Members.-

(1) The Chairperson or any Member may, by notice in writing under his hand addressed to the President of India, resign his office.

(2) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (3), the Chairperson or any Member shall only be removed from his office by order of the President of India on the ground of proved Misbehaviour or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on reference being made to it by the President, has, on inquiry held in accordance with the procedure prescribed in that behalf by the Supreme Court, reported that the Chairperson or the Member, as the case may be, ought on any such ground to be removed.

(3) Notwithstanding anything in sub-section (2), the President may, by order, remove from office the Chairperson or any Member if the Chairperson or such Member, as the case may be,-

(a) is adjudged an insolvent; or

(b) engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or

(c) is unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body; or

(d) is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; or

(e) is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence which in the opinion of the President involves moral turpitude.”.

Section 6. Substitution of new section for Section 6

For Section 6 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“6. Term of office of Chairperson and Members.-

(1) A person appointed as Chairperson shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office or until he attains the age of seventy years, whichever is earlier.

(2) A person appointed as a Member shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office and shall be eligible for re-appointment for another term of five years:

Provided that no Member shall hold office after he has attained the age of seventy years.

(3) On ceasing to hold office, a Chairperson or a Member shall be ineligible for further employment under the Government of India or under the Government of any State.”.

Section 7. Substitution of new section for Section 8

For Section 8 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“8. Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members.-The salaries and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed :

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.”.

Section 8. Amendment of Section 10

In Section 10 of the principal Act, for sub-section (2), the following sub-section shall be substituted, namely:-

“(2) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the rules made there under, the Commission shall have the power to lay down by regulations its own procedure.”.

Section 9. Amendment of Section 12

In Section 12 of the principal Act,-

(a) in clause (a), after the words “or any person on his behalf, the words “or on a direction or order of any court” shall be inserted;

(b) for clause (c), the following clause shall be substituted, namely:-

“(c) visit, notwithstanding anything contained in any other law for the time being in force, any jail or other institution under the control of the State Government, where persons are detained or lodged for purposes of treatment, reformation or protection, for the study of the living conditions of the inmates thereof and make recommendations thereon to the Government;”.

Section 10. Amendment of Section 13

In Section 13 of the principal Act, after subsection (5), the following sub-sections shall be inserted, namely:-

“(6) Where the Commission considers it necessary or expedient so to do, it may, by order, transfer any complaint filed or pending before it to the State Commission of the State from which the complaint arises, for disposal in accordance with the provisions of this Act:

Provided that no such complaint shall be transferred unless the same is one respecting which the State Commission has jurisdiction to entertain the same.

(7) Every complaint transferred under sub-section (6) shall be dealt with and disposed of by the State Government as if it were a complaint initially filed before it”.

Section 11. Substitution of new section for Section 18

For Section 18 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“18. Steps during and after inquiry.-The Commission may take any of the following steps during or upon the completion of an inquiry held under this Act, namely:-

(a) where the inquiry discloses the commission of violation of human rights or negligence in the prevention of violation of human rights or abetment thereof by a public servant, it may recommend to the concerned Government or authority-

(i) to make payment of compensation or damages to the complainant or to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary;

(ii) to initiate proceedings for prosecution or such other suitable action as the Commission may deem fit against the concerned person or persons;

(iii) to take such further action as it may think fit;

(b) approach the Supreme Court or the High Court concerned for such directions, orders or writs as that Court may deem necessary;

(c) recommend to the concerned Government or authority at any stage of the inquiry for the grant of such immediate interim relief to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary;

(d) subject to the provisions of clause (e), provide a copy of the inquiry report to the petitioner or his representative;

(e) the Commission shall send a copy of its inquiry report together with its recommendations to the concerned Government or authority and the concerned Government or authority shall, within a period of one month, or such further time as the Commission may allow, forward its comments on the report, including the action taken or proposed to be taken thereon, to the Commission;

(f) the Commission shall publish its inquiry report together with the comments of the concerned Government or authority, if any, and the action taken or proposed to be taken by the concerned Government or authority on the recommendations of the Commission.”.

Section 12. Amendment of Section 21

In Section 21 of the principal Act,-

(a) for sub-section (2), the following sub-section shall be substituted, namely:-

“(2) The State Commission shall, with effect from such date as the State Government may by notification specify, consist of-

(a) a Chairperson who has been a Chief Justice of a High Court;

(b) one Member who is, or has been, a Judge of a High Court or District Judge in the State with a minimum of seven years experience as District Judge;

(c) one Member to be appointed from among persons having knowledge of or practical experience in matters relating to human rights.”;

(b) after sub-section (5), the following sub-section shall be inserted, namely:-

“(6) Two or more State Governments may, with the consent of a Chairperson or Member of a State Commission, appoint such Chairperson or, as the case may be, such Member of another State Commission simultaneously if such Chairperson or Member consents to such appointment:

Provided that every appointment made under this sub-section shall be made after obtaining the recommendations of the Committee referred to in subsection (1) of Section 22 in respect of the State for which a common Chairperson or Member, or both, as the case may be, is to be appointed.”.

Section 13. Amendment of Section 22

In Section 22 of the principal Act,-

(a) in the marginal heading for the words “other Members”, the word “Members” shall be substituted;

(b) in sub-section (1), for the words “other Members”, the word “Members” shall be substituted;

(c) in sub-section (2), for the words “any vacancy in the Committee”, the words, brackets and figure “any vacancy of any Member in the Committee referred to in sub-section (1)” shall be substituted.

Section 14. Amendment of Section 23

In Section 23 of the principal Act,-

(a) for the marginal heading “Removal of a Member of the State Commission”, the marginal heading “Resignation and Removal of Chairperson or a Member of the State Commission” shall be substituted;

(b) for sub-section (1), the following sub-sections shall be substituted, namely:-

“(1) The Chairperson or a Member of a State Commission may, by notice in writing under his hand addressed to the Governor, resign his office.

(1-A) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (2), the Chairperson or any Member of the State Commission shall only be removed from his office by order of the President on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity after the Supreme Court, on a reference being made to it by the President, has, on inquiry held in accordance with the procedure prescribed in that behalf by the Supreme Court, reported that the Chairperson or such Member, as the case may be, ought on any such ground to be removed.”;

(c) in sub-section (2),-

(a) for the word, brackets and figure “sub-section (1)” the word, brackets, figure and letter, sub-section (1-A)” shall be substituted;

(b) for the words “other Member” at both the places where they occur, the word “Member” shall be substituted.

Section 15. Substitution of new section for Section 24

For Section 24 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“24. Term of office of Chairperson and Members of the State Commission.-

(1) A person appointed as Chairperson shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office or until he attains the age of seventy years, whichever is earlier.

(2) A person appointed as a Member shall hold office for a term of five years from the date on which he enters upon his office shall be eligible for re-appointment for another term of five years :

Provided that no Member shall hold office after he has attained the age of seventy years.

(3) On ceasing to hold office, a Chairperson or a Member shall be ineligible for further employment under the Government of a State or under the Government of India”.

Section 16. Substitution of new section for Section 26

For Section 26 of the principal Act, the following section shall be substituted, namely:-

“26. Terms and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members of State Commissions.-The salaries and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.”.

Section 17. Amendment of Section 40

In Section 40 of the principal Act, in sub-section (2), in clause (a), for the word “Members”, the words “Chairperson and Members” shall be substituted.

Section 18. Insertion of new Section 40-B

After Section 40-A of the principal Act, the following section shall be inserted, namely:-

“40-B. Power of Commission to make regulations.-

(1) Subject to the provisions of this Act and the rules made there under, the Commission may, with the previous approval of the Central Government, by notification, make regulations to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such regulations may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) the procedure to be followed by the Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 10;

(b) the returns and statistics to be furnished by the State Commissions;

(c) any other matter which has to be, or may be, specified by regulations.

(3) Every regulation made by the Commission under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session, for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the regulation or both Houses agree that the regulation should not be made, the regulation shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that regulation.”.

Section 19. Amendment of Section 41

In Section 41 of the principal Act, in sub-section (2), in clause (a), for the words “the Members”, the words “the Chairperson and Members” shall be substituted.

Bydeb

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005

Preamble

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 20051

[Act No. 4 of 2006]

[January 20, 2006]

An Act to provide for the constitution of a National Commission and State Commissions or Protection of Child Rights and Children’s Courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

Whereas India participated in the United Nations (UN) General Assembly Summit in 1990, which adopted a Declaration on Survival, Protection and Development of Children;

And whereas India has also acceded to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on the 11th December, 1992;

And whereas CRC is an international treaty that makes it incumbent upon the signatory States to take all necessary steps to protect children’s rights enumerated in the Convention;

And whereas in order to ensure protection of rights of children one of the recent initiatives that the Government have taken for Children is the adoption of National Charter for Children, 2003;

And whereas the UN General Assembly Special Session on Children held in May 2002 adopted an Outcome Document titled “A World Fit for Children” containing the goals, objectives, strategies and activities to be undertaken by the member countries for the current decade;

And whereas it is expedient to enact a law relating to children to give effect to the policies adopted by the Government in this regard, standards prescribed in the CRC, and all other relevant international instruments;

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fifty-sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

1. Received the assent of the President on January 20, 2006 and published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Part II, Section 1

1. Short title, extent and commencement.

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 20051

[Act No. 4 of 2006]

[January 20, 2006]

An Act to provide for the constitution of a National Commission and State Commissions or Protection of Child Rights and Children’s Courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

Whereas India participated in the United Nations (UN) General Assembly Summit in 1990, which adopted a Declaration on Survival, Protection and Development of Children;

And whereas India has also acceded to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on the 11th December, 1992;

And whereas CRC is an international treaty that makes it incumbent upon the signatory States to take all necessary steps to protect children’s rights enumerated in the Convention;

And whereas in order to ensure protection of rights of children one of the recent initiatives that the Government have taken for Children is the adoption of National Charter for Children, 2003;

And whereas the UN General Assembly Special Session on Children held in May 2002 adopted an Outcome Document titled “A World Fit for Children” containing the goals, objectives, strategies and activities to be undertaken by the member countries for the current decade;

And whereas it is expedient to enact a law relating to children to give effect to the policies adopted by the Government in this regard, standards prescribed in the CRC, and all other relevant international instruments;

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fifty-sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

1. Received the assent of the President on January 20, 2006 and published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Part II, Section 1

(1) This Act may be called the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005.

(2) It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir.

(3) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

2. Definitions.

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,-

(a) “Chairperson” means the Chairperson of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be;

(b) “child rights” includes the children’s rights adopted in the United Nations convention on the Rights of the Child on the 20th November, 1989 and ratified by the Government of India on the 1lth December, 1992;

(c) “Commission” means the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights constituted under Section 3;

(d) “Member” means a Member of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be, and includes the Chairperson;

(e) “notification” means a notification published in the Official Gazette;

(f) “prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(g) “State Commission” means a State Commission for Protection of Child Rights constituted under Section 17.

3. Constitution of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

(1) The Central Government shall, by notification, constitute a body to be known as the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to exercise the powers conferred on, and to perform the functions assigned to it, under this Act.

(2) The Commission shall consist of the following Members, namely:-

(a) a Chairperson who is a person of eminence and has done outstanding work for promoting the welfare of children; and

(b) six Members, out of which at least two shall be women, from the following fields, to be appointed by the Central Government from amongst persons of eminence, ability, integrity, standing and experience in,-

(i) education;

(ii) child health, care, welfare or child development;

(iii) juvenile justice or care of neglected or marginalized children or children with disabilities;

(iv) elimination of child labour or children in distress;

(v) child psychology or sociology; and

(vi) law relating to children.

(3) The office of the Commission shall be at Delhi.

4. Appointment of Chairperson and Members.

The Central Government shall, by notification, appoint the Chairperson and other Members :

Provided that the Chairperson shall be appointed on the recommendation of a three member Selection Committee constituted by the Central Government under the Chairmanship of the Minister in-charge of the Ministry of Human Resource Development.

5. Term of office and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members.

(1) The Chairperson and every Member shall hold office as such for a term of three years from the date on which he assumes office :

Provided that no Chairperson or a Member shall hold the office for more than two terms:

Provided further that no Chairperson or any other Member shall hold office as such after he has attained-

(a) in the case of the Chairperson, the age of sixty-five years; and

(b) in the case of a Member, the age of sixty years.

(2) The Chairperson or a Member may, by writing under his hand addressed to the Central Government, resign his office at any time.

6. Salary and allowances of Chairperson and Members.

The salary and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members, shall be such as may be prescribed by the Central Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member, as the case may be, shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.

7. Removal from office.

(1) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (2), the Chairperson may be removed from his office by an order of the Central Government on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), the Central Government may by order remove from office the Chairperson or any other Member, if the Chairperson or, as the case may be, such other Member,-

(a) is adjudged an insolvent; or

(b) engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or

(c) refuses to act or becomes incapable of acting; or

(d) is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; or

(e) has so abused his office as to render his continuance in office detrimental to the public interest; or

(f) is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence which in the opinion of the Central Government involves moral turpitude; or

(g) is, without obtaining leave of absence from the Commission, absent from three consecutive meetings of the Commission.

(3) No person shall be removed under this section until that person has been given an opportunity of being heard in the matter.

8. Vacation of office by Chairperson or Member.

(1) If the Chairperson or, as the case may be, a Member,-

(a) becomes subject to any of the disqualifications mentioned in Section 7; or

(b) tenders his resignation under sub-section (2) of Section 5, his seat shall thereupon become vacant.

(2) If a casual vacancy occurs in the office of the Chairperson or a Member, whether by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, such vacancy shall be filled within a period of ninety days by making afresh appointment in accordance with the provisions of Section 4 and the person so appointed shall hold office for the remainder of the term of office for which the Chairperson, or a Member, as the case may be, in whose place he is so appointed would have held that office.

9. Vacancies, etc., not to invalidate proceedings of Commission.

No act or proceeding of the Commission shall be invalid merely by reason of-

(a) any vacancy in, or any defect in the constitution of, the Commission; or

(b) any defect in the appointment of a person as the Chairperson or a Member; or

(c) any irregularity in the procedure of the Commission not affecting the merits of the case.

10. Procedure for transaction of business.

(1) The Commission shall meet regularly at its office at such time as the Chairperson thinks fit, but three months shall not intervene between its last and the next meeting.

(2) All decisions at a meeting shall be taken by majority :

Provided that in the case of equality of votes, the Chairperson, or in his absence the person presiding, shall have and exercise a second or casting vote.

(3) If for any reason, the Chairperson, is unable to attend the meeting of the Commission, any Member chosen by the Members present from amongst themselves at the meeting, shall preside.

(4) The Commission shall observe such rules of procedure in the transaction of its business at a meeting, including the quorum at such meeting, as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

(5) All orders and decisions of the Commission shall be authenticated by the Member-Secretary or any other officer of the Commission duly authorised by Member-Secretary in this behalf.

11. Member-Secretary, officers and other employees of Commission.

(1) The Central Government shall, by notification, appoint an officer not below the rank of the Joint Secretary or the Additional Secretary to the Government of India as a Member-Secretary of the Commission and shall make available to the Commission such other officers and employees as may be necessary for the efficient performance of its functions.

(2) The Member-Secretary shall be responsible for the proper administration of the affairs of the Commission and its day-to-day management and shall exercise and discharge such other powers and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

(3) The salary and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of the Member-Secretary, other officers and employees, appointed for the purpose of the Commission shall be such as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

12. Salaries and allowances to be paid out of grants.

The salaries and allowances payable to the Chairperson and Members and the administrative expenses, including salaries, allowances and pensions payable to the Member-Secretary, other officers and employees referred to in Section 11, shall be paid out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1) of Section 27.

13. Functions of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall perform all or any of the following functions, namely:-

(a) examine and review the safeguards provided by or under any law for the time being in force for the protection of child rights and recommend measures for their effective implementation;

(b) present to the Central Government, annually and at such other intervals, as the Commission may deem fit, reports upon the working of those safeguards;

(c) inquire into violation of child rights and recommend initiation of proceedings in such cases;

(d) examine all factors that inhibit the enjoyment of rights of children affected by terrorism, communal violence, riots, natural disaster, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, trafficking, maltreatment, torture and exploitation, pornography and prostitution and recommend appropriate remedial measures;

(e) look into the matters relating to children in need of special care and protection including children in distress, marginalized and disadvantaged children, children in conflict with law, juveniles, children without family and children of prisoners and recommend appropriate remedial measures;

(f) study treaties and other international instruments and undertake periodical review of existing policies, programmes and other activities on child rights and make recommendations for their effective implementation in the best interest of children;

(g) undertake and promote research in the field of child rights;

(h) spread child rights literacy among various sections of the society and promote awareness of the safeguards available for protection of these rights through publications, the media, seminars and other available means;

(i) inspect or cause to be inspected any juvenile custodial home, or any other place of residence or institution meant for children, under the control of the Central Government or any State Government or any other authority, including any institution run by a social organisation; where children are detained or lodged for the purpose of treatment, reformation or protection and take up with these authorities for remedial action, if found necessary;

(j) inquire into complaints and take suo motu notice of matters relating to,-

(i) deprivation and violation of child rights;

(ii) non-implementation of laws providing for protection and development of children;

(iii) non-compliance of policy decisions, guidelines or instructions aimed at mitigating hardships to and ensuring welfare of the children and to provide relief to such children, or take up the issues arising out of such matters with appropriate authorities; and

(k) such other functions as it may consider necessary for the promotion of child rights and any other matter incidental to the above functions.

(2) The Commission shall not inquire into any matter which is pending before a State Commission or any other Commission duly constituted under any law for the time being in force.

14. Powers relating to inquiries.

(1) The Commission shall, while inquiring into any matter referred to in clause (j) of sub-section (1) of Section 13 have all the powers of a civil court trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908) and, in particular, in respect of the following matters, namely:-

(a) summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him on oath;

(b) discovery and production of any document;

(c) receiving evidence on affidavits;

(d) requisitioning any public record or copy thereof from any court or office; and

(e) issuing commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents.

(2) The Commission shall have the power to forward any case to a Magistrate having jurisdiction to try the same and the Magistrate to whom any such case is forwarded shall proceed to hear the complaint against the accused as if the case has been forwarded to him under Section 346 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974).

15. Steps after inquiry.

The Commission may take any of the following steps upon the completion of an inquiry held under this Act, namely:-

(i) where the inquiry discloses, the Commission of violation of child rights of a serious nature or contravention of provisions of any law for the time being in force, it may recommend to the concerned Government or authority the initiation of proceedings for prosecution or such other action as the Commission may deem fit against the concerned person or persons;

(ii) approach the Supreme Court or the High Court concerned for such directions, orders or writs as that Court may deem necessary;

(iii) recommend to the concerned Government or authority for the grant of such interim relief to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary.

16. Annual and special reports of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall submit an annual report to the Central Government and to the State Government concerned and may at any time submit special reports on any matter which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The Central Government and the State Government concerned, as the case may be, shall cause the annual and special reports of the Commission to be laid before each House of Parliament or the State Legislature respectively, as the case may be, along with a memorandum of action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations of the Commission and the reasons for non-acceptance of the recommendations, if any, within a period of one year from the date of receipt of such report.

(3) The annual report shall be prepared in such form, manner and contain such details as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

17. Constitution of State Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

(1) A State Government may constitute a body to be known as the……………………(name of the State) Commission for Protection of Child Rights to exercise the powers conferred upon, and to perform the functions assigned to, a State Commission under this chapter.

(2) The State Commission shall consist of the following Members, namely:-

(a) a Chairperson who is a person of eminence and has done outstanding work for promoting the welfare of children; and

(b) six Members, out of which at least two shall be women, from the following fields, to be appointed by the State Government from amongst persons of eminence, ability, integrity, standing and experience in,-

(i) education;

(ii) child health, care, welfare or child development;

(iii) juvenile justice or care of neglected or marginalized children or children with disabilities;

(iv) elimination of child labour or children in distress;

(v) child psychology or sociology; and

(vi) laws relating to children.

(3) The headquarter of the State Commission shall be at such place as the State Government may, by notification, specify.

18. Appointment of Chairperson and other Members.

The State Government shall, by notification, appoint the Chairperson and other Members :

Provided that the Chairperson shall be appointed on the recommendation of a three Member Selection Committee constituted by the State Government under the Chairmanship of the Minister-in-charge of the Department dealing with children.

19. Term of office and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members.

(1) The Chairperson and every Member shall hold office as such for a term of three years from the date on which he assumes office :

Provided that no Chairperson or a Member shall hold the office for more than two terms:

Provided further that no Chairperson or any other Member shall hold office as such after he has attained-

(a) in the case of Chairperson, the age of sixty-five years; and

(b) in the case of a Member, the age of sixty years.

(2) The Chairperson or a Member may, by writing under his hand addressed to the State Government, resign his office at any time.

20. Salary and allowances of Chairperson and Members.

The salaries and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member, as the case may be, shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.

21. Secretary, officers and other employees of the State Commission.

(1) The State Government shall, by notification, appoint an officer not below the rank of the Secretary to the State Government as the Secretary of the State Commission and shall make available to the State Commission such other officers and employees as may be necessary for the efficient performance of its functions.

(2) The Secretary shall be responsible for the proper administration of the affairs of the State Commission and its day-to-day management and shall exercise and discharge such other powers and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the State Government.

(3) The salary and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of the Secretary, other officers and employees, appointed for the purpose of the State Commission shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government.

22. Salaries and allowances to be paid out of grants.

The salaries and allowances payable to the Chairperson and Members and the administrative expenses, including salaries, allowances and pensions payable to the Secretary, other officers and employees referred to in Section 21, shall be paid out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1) of Section 28.

23. Annual and special reports of State Commission.

(1) The State Commission shall submit an annual report to the State Government and may at any time submit special reports on any matter which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The State Government shall cause all the reports referred to in sub-section (1) to be laid before each House of State Legislature, where it consists of two Houses, or where such Legislature consists of one House, before that House along with a memorandum explaining the action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations relating to the State and the reasons for the non-acceptance, if any, of any of such recommendations.

(3) The annual report shall be prepared in such form, manner and contain such details as may be prescribed by the State Government.

24. Application of certain provisions relating to National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to State Commissions.

The provisions of Sections 7, 8, 9, 10, sub-section (1) of Section 13 and Sections 14 and 15 shall apply to a State Commission and shall have effect, subject to the following modifications, namely:-

(a) references to “Commission” shall be construed as references to “State Commission”;

(b) references to “Central Government” shall be construed as references to “State Government”; and

(c) references to “Member-Secretary” shall be construed as references to “Secretary”.

25. Children’s Courts.

For the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights, the State Government may, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the High Court, by notification, specify at least a court in the State or specify, for each district, a Court of Session to be a Children’s Court to try the said offences :

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply if-

(a) a Court of Session is already specified as a special court; or

(b) a special court is already constituted,

for such offences under any other law for the time being in force.

26. Special Public Prosecutor.

For every Children’s Court, the State Government shall, by notification, specify a Public Prosecutor or appoint an advocate who has been in practice as an advocate for not less than seven years, as a Special Public Prosecutor for the purpose of conducting cases in that Court.

27. Grants by Central Government.

(1) The Central Government shall, after due appropriation made by Parliament by law in this behalf, pay to the Commission by way of grants such sums of money as the Central Government may think fit for being utilised for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The Commission may spend such sums of money as it thinks fit for performing the functions under this Act, and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1).

28. Grants by State Governments.

(1) The State Government shall, after due appropriation made by Legislature by law in this behalf, pay to the State Commission by way of grants such sums of money as the State Government may think fit for being utilised for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The State Commission may spend such sums of money as it thinks fit for performing the functions under Chapter III of this Act, and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1).

29. Accounts and audit of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the Central Government in consultation with the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the Commission shall be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the Commission to the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

(3) The Comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the Commission under this Act shall, have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and Auditor-General generally has in connection with the audit of Government accounts and, in particular, shall have the right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the Commission.

(4) The accounts of the Commission as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon shall be forwarded annually to the Central Government by the Commission and the Central Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be after it is received, before each House of Parliament.

30. Accounts and audit of State Commission.

(1) The State Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the State Government in consultation with the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the State Commission shall be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the State Commission to the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

(3) The Comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the State Commission under this Act shall, have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and Auditor-General generally has in connection with the audit of Government accounts and, in particular, shall have the right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the State Commission.

(4) The accounts of the State Commission as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon shall be forwarded annually to the State Government by the State Commission and the State Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be after it is received, before the State Legislature.

31. Protection of action taken in good faith.

No suit, prosecution or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Central Government, the State Government, the Commission, the State Commission, or any Member thereof or any person acting under the direction either of the Central Government, State Government, Commission or the State Commission, in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done in pursuance of this Act or of any rules made thereunder or in respect of the publication by or under the authority of the Central Government, State Government, Commission, or the State Commission of any report or paper.

32. Chairperson, Members and other officers to be public servant.

Every Member of the Commission, State Commission and every officer appointed in the Commission or the State Commission to exercise functions under this Act shall be deemed to be a public servant within the meaning of Section 21 of the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).

33. Directions by Central Government.

(1) In the discharge of its functions under this Act, the Commission shall be guided by such directions on questions of policy relating to national purposes, as may be given to it by the Central Government.

(2) If any dispute arises between the Central Government and the Commission as to whether a question is or in not a question of policy relating to national purposes, the decision of the Central Government thereon shall be final.

34. Returns or information.

The Commission shall furnish to the Central Government such returns or other information with respect to its activities as the Central Government may, from time to time, require.

35. Power of Central Government to make rules.

(1) The Central Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson and Members of the Commission and their salaries and allowances under Section 6;

(b) the procedure to be followed by the Commission in the transaction of its business at a meeting under sub-section (4) of Section 10;

(c) the powers and duties which may be exercised and performed by the Member-Secretary of the Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 11;

(d) the salary and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of officers and other employees of the Commission under sub-section (3) of Section 11; and

(e) form of the statement of accounts and other records to be prepared by the Commission under sub-section (1) of Section 29.

(3) Every rule made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the rule or both Houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.

36. Power of State Government to make rules.

(1) The State Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson and Members of the State Commission and their salaries and allowances under Section 20;

(b) the procedure to be followed by the State Commission in the transaction of its business at a meeting under sub-section (4) of Section 10 read with Section 24;

(c) the powers and duties which may be exercised and performed by the Secretary of the State Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 21;

(d) the salary and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of officers and other employees of the State Commission under sub-section (3) of Section 21; and

(e) form of the statement of accounts and other records to be prepared by the State Commission under sub-section (1) of Section 30.

(3) Every rule made by the State Government under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of the State Legislature where it consists of two Houses, or where such State Legislature consists of one House, before that House.

37. Power to remove difficulties.

(1) If any difficulty arises in giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government may, by order published in the Official Gazette, make such provisions, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act, as may appear to be necessary for removing the difficulty :

Provided that no order shall be made under this section after the expiry of the period of two years from the date of commencement of this Act.

(2) Every order made under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament.

Bydeb

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005

Preamble

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 20051

[Act No. 4 of 2006]

[January 20, 2006]

An Act to provide for the constitution of a National Commission and State Commissions or Protection of Child Rights and Children’s Courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

Whereas India participated in the United Nations (UN) General Assembly Summit in 1990, which adopted a Declaration on Survival, Protection and Development of Children;

And whereas India has also acceded to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on the 11th December, 1992;

And whereas CRC is an international treaty that makes it incumbent upon the signatory States to take all necessary steps to protect children’s rights enumerated in the Convention;

And whereas in order to ensure protection of rights of children one of the recent initiatives that the Government have taken for Children is the adoption of National Charter for Children, 2003;

And whereas the UN General Assembly Special Session on Children held in May 2002 adopted an Outcome Document titled “A World Fit for Children” containing the goals, objectives, strategies and activities to be undertaken by the member countries for the current decade;

And whereas it is expedient to enact a law relating to children to give effect to the policies adopted by the Government in this regard, standards prescribed in the CRC, and all other relevant international instruments;

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fifty-sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

1. Received the assent of the President on January 20, 2006 and published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Part II, Section 1

1. Short title, extent and commencement.

Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 20051

[Act No. 4 of 2006]

[January 20, 2006]

An Act to provide for the constitution of a National Commission and State Commissions or Protection of Child Rights and Children’s Courts for providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto

Whereas India participated in the United Nations (UN) General Assembly Summit in 1990, which adopted a Declaration on Survival, Protection and Development of Children;

And whereas India has also acceded to the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) on the 11th December, 1992;

And whereas CRC is an international treaty that makes it incumbent upon the signatory States to take all necessary steps to protect children’s rights enumerated in the Convention;

And whereas in order to ensure protection of rights of children one of the recent initiatives that the Government have taken for Children is the adoption of National Charter for Children, 2003;

And whereas the UN General Assembly Special Session on Children held in May 2002 adopted an Outcome Document titled “A World Fit for Children” containing the goals, objectives, strategies and activities to be undertaken by the member countries for the current decade;

And whereas it is expedient to enact a law relating to children to give effect to the policies adopted by the Government in this regard, standards prescribed in the CRC, and all other relevant international instruments;

Be it enacted by Parliament in the Fifty-sixth Year of the Republic of India as follows:-

1. Received the assent of the President on January 20, 2006 and published in the Gazette of India, Extra., Part II, Section 1

(1) This Act may be called the Commissions for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005.

(2) It extends to the whole of India except the State of Jammu and Kashmir.

(3) It shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

2. Definitions.

In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,-

(a) “Chairperson” means the Chairperson of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be;

(b) “child rights” includes the children’s rights adopted in the United Nations convention on the Rights of the Child on the 20th November, 1989 and ratified by the Government of India on the 1lth December, 1992;

(c) “Commission” means the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights constituted under Section 3;

(d) “Member” means a Member of the Commission or of the State Commission, as the case may be, and includes the Chairperson;

(e) “notification” means a notification published in the Official Gazette;

(f) “prescribed” means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(g) “State Commission” means a State Commission for Protection of Child Rights constituted under Section 17.

3. Constitution of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

(1) The Central Government shall, by notification, constitute a body to be known as the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to exercise the powers conferred on, and to perform the functions assigned to it, under this Act.

(2) The Commission shall consist of the following Members, namely:-

(a) a Chairperson who is a person of eminence and has done outstanding work for promoting the welfare of children; and

(b) six Members, out of which at least two shall be women, from the following fields, to be appointed by the Central Government from amongst persons of eminence, ability, integrity, standing and experience in,-

(i) education;

(ii) child health, care, welfare or child development;

(iii) juvenile justice or care of neglected or marginalized children or children with disabilities;

(iv) elimination of child labour or children in distress;

(v) child psychology or sociology; and

(vi) law relating to children.

(3) The office of the Commission shall be at Delhi.

4. Appointment of Chairperson and Members.

The Central Government shall, by notification, appoint the Chairperson and other Members :

Provided that the Chairperson shall be appointed on the recommendation of a three member Selection Committee constituted by the Central Government under the Chairmanship of the Minister in-charge of the Ministry of Human Resource Development.

5. Term of office and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members.

(1) The Chairperson and every Member shall hold office as such for a term of three years from the date on which he assumes office :

Provided that no Chairperson or a Member shall hold the office for more than two terms:

Provided further that no Chairperson or any other Member shall hold office as such after he has attained-

(a) in the case of the Chairperson, the age of sixty-five years; and

(b) in the case of a Member, the age of sixty years.

(2) The Chairperson or a Member may, by writing under his hand addressed to the Central Government, resign his office at any time.

6. Salary and allowances of Chairperson and Members.

The salary and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members, shall be such as may be prescribed by the Central Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member, as the case may be, shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.

7. Removal from office.

(1) Subject to the provisions of sub-section (2), the Chairperson may be removed from his office by an order of the Central Government on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity.

(2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-section (1), the Central Government may by order remove from office the Chairperson or any other Member, if the Chairperson or, as the case may be, such other Member,-

(a) is adjudged an insolvent; or

(b) engages during his term of office in any paid employment outside the duties of his office; or

(c) refuses to act or becomes incapable of acting; or

(d) is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; or

(e) has so abused his office as to render his continuance in office detrimental to the public interest; or

(f) is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence which in the opinion of the Central Government involves moral turpitude; or

(g) is, without obtaining leave of absence from the Commission, absent from three consecutive meetings of the Commission.

(3) No person shall be removed under this section until that person has been given an opportunity of being heard in the matter.

8. Vacation of office by Chairperson or Member.

(1) If the Chairperson or, as the case may be, a Member,-

(a) becomes subject to any of the disqualifications mentioned in Section 7; or

(b) tenders his resignation under sub-section (2) of Section 5, his seat shall thereupon become vacant.

(2) If a casual vacancy occurs in the office of the Chairperson or a Member, whether by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, such vacancy shall be filled within a period of ninety days by making afresh appointment in accordance with the provisions of Section 4 and the person so appointed shall hold office for the remainder of the term of office for which the Chairperson, or a Member, as the case may be, in whose place he is so appointed would have held that office.

9. Vacancies, etc., not to invalidate proceedings of Commission.

No act or proceeding of the Commission shall be invalid merely by reason of-

(a) any vacancy in, or any defect in the constitution of, the Commission; or

(b) any defect in the appointment of a person as the Chairperson or a Member; or

(c) any irregularity in the procedure of the Commission not affecting the merits of the case.

10. Procedure for transaction of business.

(1) The Commission shall meet regularly at its office at such time as the Chairperson thinks fit, but three months shall not intervene between its last and the next meeting.

(2) All decisions at a meeting shall be taken by majority :

Provided that in the case of equality of votes, the Chairperson, or in his absence the person presiding, shall have and exercise a second or casting vote.

(3) If for any reason, the Chairperson, is unable to attend the meeting of the Commission, any Member chosen by the Members present from amongst themselves at the meeting, shall preside.

(4) The Commission shall observe such rules of procedure in the transaction of its business at a meeting, including the quorum at such meeting, as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

(5) All orders and decisions of the Commission shall be authenticated by the Member-Secretary or any other officer of the Commission duly authorised by Member-Secretary in this behalf.

11. Member-Secretary, officers and other employees of Commission.

(1) The Central Government shall, by notification, appoint an officer not below the rank of the Joint Secretary or the Additional Secretary to the Government of India as a Member-Secretary of the Commission and shall make available to the Commission such other officers and employees as may be necessary for the efficient performance of its functions.

(2) The Member-Secretary shall be responsible for the proper administration of the affairs of the Commission and its day-to-day management and shall exercise and discharge such other powers and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

(3) The salary and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of the Member-Secretary, other officers and employees, appointed for the purpose of the Commission shall be such as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

12. Salaries and allowances to be paid out of grants.

The salaries and allowances payable to the Chairperson and Members and the administrative expenses, including salaries, allowances and pensions payable to the Member-Secretary, other officers and employees referred to in Section 11, shall be paid out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1) of Section 27.

13. Functions of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall perform all or any of the following functions, namely:-

(a) examine and review the safeguards provided by or under any law for the time being in force for the protection of child rights and recommend measures for their effective implementation;

(b) present to the Central Government, annually and at such other intervals, as the Commission may deem fit, reports upon the working of those safeguards;

(c) inquire into violation of child rights and recommend initiation of proceedings in such cases;

(d) examine all factors that inhibit the enjoyment of rights of children affected by terrorism, communal violence, riots, natural disaster, domestic violence, HIV/AIDS, trafficking, maltreatment, torture and exploitation, pornography and prostitution and recommend appropriate remedial measures;

(e) look into the matters relating to children in need of special care and protection including children in distress, marginalized and disadvantaged children, children in conflict with law, juveniles, children without family and children of prisoners and recommend appropriate remedial measures;

(f) study treaties and other international instruments and undertake periodical review of existing policies, programmes and other activities on child rights and make recommendations for their effective implementation in the best interest of children;

(g) undertake and promote research in the field of child rights;

(h) spread child rights literacy among various sections of the society and promote awareness of the safeguards available for protection of these rights through publications, the media, seminars and other available means;

(i) inspect or cause to be inspected any juvenile custodial home, or any other place of residence or institution meant for children, under the control of the Central Government or any State Government or any other authority, including any institution run by a social organisation; where children are detained or lodged for the purpose of treatment, reformation or protection and take up with these authorities for remedial action, if found necessary;

(j) inquire into complaints and take suo motu notice of matters relating to,-

(i) deprivation and violation of child rights;

(ii) non-implementation of laws providing for protection and development of children;

(iii) non-compliance of policy decisions, guidelines or instructions aimed at mitigating hardships to and ensuring welfare of the children and to provide relief to such children, or take up the issues arising out of such matters with appropriate authorities; and

(k) such other functions as it may consider necessary for the promotion of child rights and any other matter incidental to the above functions.

(2) The Commission shall not inquire into any matter which is pending before a State Commission or any other Commission duly constituted under any law for the time being in force.

14. Powers relating to inquiries.

(1) The Commission shall, while inquiring into any matter referred to in clause (j) of sub-section (1) of Section 13 have all the powers of a civil court trying a suit under the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908 (5 of 1908) and, in particular, in respect of the following matters, namely:-

(a) summoning and enforcing the attendance of any person and examining him on oath;

(b) discovery and production of any document;

(c) receiving evidence on affidavits;

(d) requisitioning any public record or copy thereof from any court or office; and

(e) issuing commissions for the examination of witnesses or documents.

(2) The Commission shall have the power to forward any case to a Magistrate having jurisdiction to try the same and the Magistrate to whom any such case is forwarded shall proceed to hear the complaint against the accused as if the case has been forwarded to him under Section 346 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (2 of 1974).

15. Steps after inquiry.

The Commission may take any of the following steps upon the completion of an inquiry held under this Act, namely:-

(i) where the inquiry discloses, the Commission of violation of child rights of a serious nature or contravention of provisions of any law for the time being in force, it may recommend to the concerned Government or authority the initiation of proceedings for prosecution or such other action as the Commission may deem fit against the concerned person or persons;

(ii) approach the Supreme Court or the High Court concerned for such directions, orders or writs as that Court may deem necessary;

(iii) recommend to the concerned Government or authority for the grant of such interim relief to the victim or the members of his family as the Commission may consider necessary.

16. Annual and special reports of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall submit an annual report to the Central Government and to the State Government concerned and may at any time submit special reports on any matter which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The Central Government and the State Government concerned, as the case may be, shall cause the annual and special reports of the Commission to be laid before each House of Parliament or the State Legislature respectively, as the case may be, along with a memorandum of action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations of the Commission and the reasons for non-acceptance of the recommendations, if any, within a period of one year from the date of receipt of such report.

(3) The annual report shall be prepared in such form, manner and contain such details as may be prescribed by the Central Government.

17. Constitution of State Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

(1) A State Government may constitute a body to be known as the……………………(name of the State) Commission for Protection of Child Rights to exercise the powers conferred upon, and to perform the functions assigned to, a State Commission under this chapter.

(2) The State Commission shall consist of the following Members, namely:-

(a) a Chairperson who is a person of eminence and has done outstanding work for promoting the welfare of children; and

(b) six Members, out of which at least two shall be women, from the following fields, to be appointed by the State Government from amongst persons of eminence, ability, integrity, standing and experience in,-

(i) education;

(ii) child health, care, welfare or child development;

(iii) juvenile justice or care of neglected or marginalized children or children with disabilities;

(iv) elimination of child labour or children in distress;

(v) child psychology or sociology; and

(vi) laws relating to children.

(3) The headquarter of the State Commission shall be at such place as the State Government may, by notification, specify.

18. Appointment of Chairperson and other Members.

The State Government shall, by notification, appoint the Chairperson and other Members :

Provided that the Chairperson shall be appointed on the recommendation of a three Member Selection Committee constituted by the State Government under the Chairmanship of the Minister-in-charge of the Department dealing with children.

19. Term of office and conditions of service of Chairperson and Members.

(1) The Chairperson and every Member shall hold office as such for a term of three years from the date on which he assumes office :

Provided that no Chairperson or a Member shall hold the office for more than two terms:

Provided further that no Chairperson or any other Member shall hold office as such after he has attained-

(a) in the case of Chairperson, the age of sixty-five years; and

(b) in the case of a Member, the age of sixty years.

(2) The Chairperson or a Member may, by writing under his hand addressed to the State Government, resign his office at any time.

20. Salary and allowances of Chairperson and Members.

The salaries and allowances payable to, and other terms and conditions of service of, the Chairperson and Members shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government:

Provided that neither the salary and allowances nor the other terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson or a Member, as the case may be, shall be varied to his disadvantage after his appointment.

21. Secretary, officers and other employees of the State Commission.

(1) The State Government shall, by notification, appoint an officer not below the rank of the Secretary to the State Government as the Secretary of the State Commission and shall make available to the State Commission such other officers and employees as may be necessary for the efficient performance of its functions.

(2) The Secretary shall be responsible for the proper administration of the affairs of the State Commission and its day-to-day management and shall exercise and discharge such other powers and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the State Government.

(3) The salary and allowances payable to, and the other terms and conditions of service of the Secretary, other officers and employees, appointed for the purpose of the State Commission shall be such as may be prescribed by the State Government.

22. Salaries and allowances to be paid out of grants.

The salaries and allowances payable to the Chairperson and Members and the administrative expenses, including salaries, allowances and pensions payable to the Secretary, other officers and employees referred to in Section 21, shall be paid out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1) of Section 28.

23. Annual and special reports of State Commission.

(1) The State Commission shall submit an annual report to the State Government and may at any time submit special reports on any matter which, in its opinion, is of such urgency or importance that it should not be deferred till submission of the annual report.

(2) The State Government shall cause all the reports referred to in sub-section (1) to be laid before each House of State Legislature, where it consists of two Houses, or where such Legislature consists of one House, before that House along with a memorandum explaining the action taken or proposed to be taken on the recommendations relating to the State and the reasons for the non-acceptance, if any, of any of such recommendations.

(3) The annual report shall be prepared in such form, manner and contain such details as may be prescribed by the State Government.

24. Application of certain provisions relating to National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to State Commissions.

The provisions of Sections 7, 8, 9, 10, sub-section (1) of Section 13 and Sections 14 and 15 shall apply to a State Commission and shall have effect, subject to the following modifications, namely:-

(a) references to “Commission” shall be construed as references to “State Commission”;

(b) references to “Central Government” shall be construed as references to “State Government”; and

(c) references to “Member-Secretary” shall be construed as references to “Secretary”.

25. Children’s Courts.

For the purpose of providing speedy trial of offences against children or of violation of child rights, the State Government may, with the concurrence of the Chief Justice of the High Court, by notification, specify at least a court in the State or specify, for each district, a Court of Session to be a Children’s Court to try the said offences :

Provided that nothing in this section shall apply if-

(a) a Court of Session is already specified as a special court; or

(b) a special court is already constituted,

for such offences under any other law for the time being in force.

26. Special Public Prosecutor.

For every Children’s Court, the State Government shall, by notification, specify a Public Prosecutor or appoint an advocate who has been in practice as an advocate for not less than seven years, as a Special Public Prosecutor for the purpose of conducting cases in that Court.

27. Grants by Central Government.

(1) The Central Government shall, after due appropriation made by Parliament by law in this behalf, pay to the Commission by way of grants such sums of money as the Central Government may think fit for being utilised for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The Commission may spend such sums of money as it thinks fit for performing the functions under this Act, and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1).

28. Grants by State Governments.

(1) The State Government shall, after due appropriation made by Legislature by law in this behalf, pay to the State Commission by way of grants such sums of money as the State Government may think fit for being utilised for the purposes of this Act.

(2) The State Commission may spend such sums of money as it thinks fit for performing the functions under Chapter III of this Act, and such sums shall be treated as expenditure payable out of the grants referred to in sub-section (1).

29. Accounts and audit of Commission.

(1) The Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the Central Government in consultation with the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the Commission shall be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the Commission to the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

(3) The Comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the Commission under this Act shall, have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and Auditor-General generally has in connection with the audit of Government accounts and, in particular, shall have the right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the Commission.

(4) The accounts of the Commission as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon shall be forwarded annually to the Central Government by the Commission and the Central Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be after it is received, before each House of Parliament.

30. Accounts and audit of State Commission.

(1) The State Commission shall maintain proper accounts and other relevant records and prepare an annual statement of accounts in such form as may be prescribed by the State Government in consultation with the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India.

(2) The accounts of the State Commission shall be audited by the Comptroller and Auditor-General at such intervals as may be specified by him and any expenditure incurred in connection with such audit shall be payable by the State Commission to the Comptroller and Auditor-General.

(3) The Comptroller and Auditor-General and any person appointed by him in connection with the audit of the accounts of the State Commission under this Act shall, have the same rights and privileges and the authority in connection with such audit as the Comptroller and Auditor-General generally has in connection with the audit of Government accounts and, in particular, shall have the right to demand the production of books, accounts, connected vouchers and other documents and papers and to inspect any of the offices of the State Commission.

(4) The accounts of the State Commission as certified by the Comptroller and Auditor-General or any other person appointed by him in this behalf, together with the audit report thereon shall be forwarded annually to the State Government by the State Commission and the State Government shall cause the audit report to be laid, as soon as may be after it is received, before the State Legislature.

31. Protection of action taken in good faith.

No suit, prosecution or other legal proceeding shall lie against the Central Government, the State Government, the Commission, the State Commission, or any Member thereof or any person acting under the direction either of the Central Government, State Government, Commission or the State Commission, in respect of anything which is in good faith done or intended to be done in pursuance of this Act or of any rules made thereunder or in respect of the publication by or under the authority of the Central Government, State Government, Commission, or the State Commission of any report or paper.

32. Chairperson, Members and other officers to be public servant.

Every Member of the Commission, State Commission and every officer appointed in the Commission or the State Commission to exercise functions under this Act shall be deemed to be a public servant within the meaning of Section 21 of the Indian Penal Code (45 of 1860).

33. Directions by Central Government.

(1) In the discharge of its functions under this Act, the Commission shall be guided by such directions on questions of policy relating to national purposes, as may be given to it by the Central Government.

(2) If any dispute arises between the Central Government and the Commission as to whether a question is or in not a question of policy relating to national purposes, the decision of the Central Government thereon shall be final.

34. Returns or information.

The Commission shall furnish to the Central Government such returns or other information with respect to its activities as the Central Government may, from time to time, require.

35. Power of Central Government to make rules.

(1) The Central Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson and Members of the Commission and their salaries and allowances under Section 6;

(b) the procedure to be followed by the Commission in the transaction of its business at a meeting under sub-section (4) of Section 10;

(c) the powers and duties which may be exercised and performed by the Member-Secretary of the Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 11;

(d) the salary and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of officers and other employees of the Commission under sub-section (3) of Section 11; and

(e) form of the statement of accounts and other records to be prepared by the Commission under sub-section (1) of Section 29.

(3) Every rule made under this Act shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament, while it is in session for a total period of thirty days which may be comprised in one session or in two or more successive sessions, and if, before the expiry of the session immediately following the session or the successive sessions aforesaid, both Houses agree in making any modification in the rule or both Houses agree that the rule should not be made, the rule shall thereafter have effect only in such modified form or be of no effect, as the case may be; so, however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under that rule.

36. Power of State Government to make rules.

(1) The State Government may, by notification, make rules to carry out the provisions of this Act.

(2) In particular, and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing power, such rules may provide for all or any of the following matters, namely:-

(a) terms and conditions of service of the Chairperson and Members of the State Commission and their salaries and allowances under Section 20;

(b) the procedure to be followed by the State Commission in the transaction of its business at a meeting under sub-section (4) of Section 10 read with Section 24;

(c) the powers and duties which may be exercised and performed by the Secretary of the State Commission under sub-section (2) of Section 21;

(d) the salary and allowances and other terms and conditions of service of officers and other employees of the State Commission under sub-section (3) of Section 21; and

(e) form of the statement of accounts and other records to be prepared by the State Commission under sub-section (1) of Section 30.

(3) Every rule made by the State Government under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of the State Legislature where it consists of two Houses, or where such State Legislature consists of one House, before that House.

37. Power to remove difficulties.

(1) If any difficulty arises in giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government may, by order published in the Official Gazette, make such provisions, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act, as may appear to be necessary for removing the difficulty :

Provided that no order shall be made under this section after the expiry of the period of two years from the date of commencement of this Act.

(2) Every order made under this section shall be laid, as soon as may be after it is made, before each House of Parliament.