Police, security men committing atrocities, say activists

New Delhi, June 26 (IANS) A member of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) said Wednesday it has received 35,523 complaints against police while other activists expressed grave concern over atrocities by security forces.

“Out of 107,655 complaints received by the NHRC in 2102, 35,523 were against police, of which 366 pertained to torture,” said Satyabrata Pal, a member of the country’s statutory apex panel for human rights.

“Not for a moment do we believe that these were the only instances of torture. These were only cases reported to us (NHRC),” Pal said here Wednesday.

“The armed and paramilitary forces argue that in some exigencies, torture is the only means through which they can extract information which they need to save civilian lives, and is therefore justified,” Pal said.

He was speaking at the International Anti-Torture Day Observation Programme in the capital.

Other human rights activists also expressed concern over the atrocities being allegedly perpetuated by the armed forces, especially the Border Security Force.

Colin Gonsalves, founder of Human Right Law Network, said: “The armed forces rape and kill so many with impunity. They kill people and portray them as militants.”

Journalist John Dayal said the media must play an important role in highlighting these issues.

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