Says PHRO Report

AMRITSAR, Punjab, India: The Punjab Human Rights Organization in its annual report for 1988 has observed that the human rights have been abused. The Sikhs and other minorities in Punjab who are fighting for their identity have been dubbed as “‘terrorist”. Gurbajhan Singh Gill, Secretary of the Association, released here the three pages report yesterday. He has sent the copies of the report to Amnesty International U.N. Commission on human rights, International League for Human Rights, Lawyer’s Committee for Human Rights and International Union for Judges.

The report stated that the radio and T.V. network which is a government monopoly are biased against religious and cultural minorities particularly the Sikhs. The report further said that judiciary has been terrorized and made subordinate to the executive through certain decisions and the enactment of laws. In the past, number of Punjab Lawyer’s Council members have been arrested and put in jails only because of their lawful activities to protect the human rights of the individuals. The undeclared political censorship has been imposed on the news media. The journalists are being subjected to different methods, including arrests to subdue stop from working independently. The editors, printer sand publishers have been booked under the “Terrorist Act” for using legal and rightful language. A constant surveillance and wave of censorship is the order of the day. More than 5% of Sikhs are put in the jails, without any trial in the court of law.

The report further said that the Central government is contravening the human rights as defined by U.N. Commission on human rights by enacting special laws and appointing special courts and violating the U.N. Convention adopted on December 10, 1984.

Article extracted from this publication >> February 5, 1988