Detecting, the atrocities committed on mankind during World War II shook the souls of the leaders of many countries, soon after the end of World War II, in 1948, a group of 48 countries called for the entire human society.  Signed a charter explaining the fundamental rights of  The main objective of the charter is to protect the human society and the human rights of the individual should be protected at all costs.

This was agreed to by the Government of India and this Charter of the United Nations was signed.  It is the misfortune of India that it took 45 years to become an independent institution related to human rights in the country and then somewhere in 1993, NHRC i.e. National Human Rights Commission came into existence, which sends its recommendations from time to time to the Center and the States.

Violation of human rights is a common thing, the kind of atmosphere that is being seen in the country at this time, discussion on human rights and its dimensions becomes important.

When it comes to human rights violations, Delhi to Bihar, U.P. Bildozer, Tribals of Jharkhand, look at any of the controversial incidents of the state, you will see the violation of human rights;  It is not hidden from us. Though we come across many such issues when NHRC discharges its duties well in taking up the serious issue of human rights violations, still NHRC finds itself helpless in giving its recommendations on many other matters.  So should it be considered an ineffective institution?  So the question arises what are the reasons for this helplessness and is there any solution for this helplessness? Through this article, we will try to find answers to these questions.

What are human rights?

In one sentence, human rights are the natural or natural rights of every person.  It includes the right to life, liberty, equality, and dignity.  Apart from this, the right to live a dignified life and political, social, economic, and cultural rights are also included in this. It was also said in the Declaration on Human Rights adopted by the United Nations that the basic rights of human beings are inattentive of any caste te, religion, gender, community, language, society, etc.  As far as fundamental rights are concerned, these are the rights mentioned in the constitution of the country.  These rights are available to the citizens of the country and all the people living in the country under any circumstances. It is appropriate to clarify one more thing here some elements of fundamental rights also come under human rights such as the right to life and personal liberty.

National Human Rights Commission

India has provided a forum to deal with human rights violations by setting up a National Human Rights Commission and setting up State Human Rights Commissions under the Protection of Human Rights Act, of 1993.  

  1. In the context of the protection of human rights in India, the National Human Rights Commission is the apex body of the country as well as the ombudsman of human rights. The former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court is its chairman.  It is part of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights.  It is also a founding member of the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions. 
  2. NHRC is empowered to protect and promote human rights. Section 12(h) of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 also envisages that the NHRC shall spread human rights literacy among various sections of society and protect these rights through publications, media, seminars, and other available means. Raise awareness of available safeguards. 
  • This commission has sent its recommendations to the government from time to time to prot, at the human rights of common citizens, children, women, elderly, and people, rights people of the L, GBT community in the country, and the government has also made suitable amendments in the constitution by implementing many done foundations.


  1. This includes receiving complaints and initiating investigations into human rights violations committed by public servants through negligence or lapses in order to prevent human rights violations.
  2. Studying the living conditions of prisoners, judicial custody and investigation into deaths in police custody are also included in the Commission’s mandate. Along with this, NHRC also studies international treaties related to human rights and other related conventions and documents and recommends their effective compliance.
  3. Research work in the field of human rights with the aim of promoting human rights in India also comes under the functions of NHRC.

Apart from this, this commission also performs many other functions like-

♦ To increase awareness related to human rights in different sections of the society.

♦ In case of any pending case, getting that case settled with the consent of the court.

♦ To hear complaints of human rights violations by public servants of any aggrieved person or any other person to his aid.

♦ To arrange for an inquiry into the living conditions of a person who is a prisoner in a mental hospital or any other institution.

♦ To review the provisions for protection of human rights in the context of the Constitution and other laws and make recommendations for effective implementation of such provisions.

♦ To investigate the limitation of human rights in the context of terrorism or other subversive acts.

♦ Promotion of non-governmental organizations and other such organizations, which are involved in the work of promoting and protecting human rights, etc.

 In this way, the National Human Rights Commission takes every possible initiative to protect human rights in India. Despite this, it is seen many times that according to which the human rights of a person should be protected, it is not done. So, should the Human Rights Commission be blamed for this or is there a fault in our system itself?

Situation of Human Rights in India

  • The human rights situation in India is somewhat complex as a result of the country’s sheer size and diversity, its reputation as a developing and sovereign, secular, democratic republic, and its history as a former colonial nation.
  • The Constitution of India provides fundamental rights, which also include freedom of religion. Taking advantage of these freedoms, communal riots happen every day.  This does not violate the fundamental rights of any one religion but hurts the human rights of all those who are victims of this incident and who have nothing to do with the incident, such as innocent children, poor men-women, old people, etc.
  • On the other hand, AFSPA laws were removed from some states of India because the incidents of misuse of special powers given to the armed forces through this law started coming to the fore. For example, to search someone’s house without a warrant; Arrest any suspicious person without a warrant; Harass a person if he breaks the law, or creates disturbance; news of misbehaving with women etc. was often in the newspapers.
  • So the question arises here that even after so many years of independence, human rights in India are facing the brunt of some kind of harassment every moment. In such a situation, it becomes necessary to know what are the challenges due to which NHRC is finding itself helpless in protecting human rights.

Current challenges

  • The Central Government and the State Governments are not bound to accept the recommendations of the Commission. Therefore, the biggest reason why human rights are not firmly effective is the lack of political will.  This is the reason why the provision of setting up a human rights court in every district remained only on paper.
  • On the other hand, the State Human Rights Commission cannot answer the Centre. This means that the armed forces are out of their purview.  Even the National Commission can merely seek a report from the Center on allegations of human rights abuses by the armed forces.  Whereas witnesses cannot be called, examined, or interrogated.  Along with this, the commission has the power to get compensation, but it does not have the right to investigate in the direction of arresting the accused.  In simple words, even today the Human Rights Commission has limited powers.
  • Under the Human Rights Protection Act, the commission cannot investigate complaints that have been lodged after one year of the incident. Therefore, many complaints remain without investigation.
  • Posts lying vacant, lack of resources, lack of public awareness towards human rights, excessive complaints received, and bureaucratic functioning within the commissions, etc.
  • All these reasons are well known but still, they were never taken seriously. Therefore, these commissions find themselves helpless in fulfilling their objectives.  In this situation, the Human Rights Commission has also come under the scanner. It can be compared to that useless son who will break free breads but cannot do anything.
  • People believe that if the Human Rights Commission is meant for the common man then the people living in remote areas of India where illiteracy and poverty are rampant; Why are you unaware of your fundamental rights? The members of the Human Rights Commission also become alert only when a major incident like rape, fake encounter, caste or communal violence, etc. has taken place in a particular area.  Under these circumstances, should the NHRC or the State Human Rights Commission be considered an ineffective institution?  Is the solution for this with the Supreme Court and these commissions?

Way forward

  • The Second Administrative Reforms Commission (ARC) in its report has made some recommendations to make the Human Rights Commission more effective. The Administrative Reforms Commission is of the view that NHRC should prepare a uniform format for making complaints before various statutory commissions.
  • For this, the details of the victims and the complainants should be given in such a way that the coordination of the data between the various commissions can be done properly.
  • The Human Rights Commission should set useful criteria for the redressed of complaints. Nodal officers should be appointed in the commission to determine and coordinate action on such issues and an internal system should be developed within each statutory commission to make the action more successful.
  • The Central and State Governments should also actively take steps to deal with serious crimes. Governments can also take the help of the Human Rights Commission for this.  The government also needs to adopt strict laws regarding mob lynching.  At the same time, the governments and the media need to leave their indifference to serious issues as well as common issues.
  • It should also be the duty of the concerned State Commissions, including the National Human Rights Commission itself, to show their presence on the serious issues of the country and help the government find solutions to those problems which do not come under their jurisdiction. Human rights will be protected in the country in a true sense only when all the institutions will cooperate in maintaining the unity-integrity of the country.  Only a noble initiative is needed.


 Mumbai Port Authority Website :- Click Here 

If you are Advocate or Lawyer Read Latest Judgement :- Click Here 

If you are Law Aspirants or Judicial Service Aspirants Join Free Test Series :- Click Here 

Join Our YouTube Channel:- Click Here