October 5, 2005 | Leave a Comment
The Punjab High Court and the Punjab State Human Rights Commission (PSHRC) have come into conflict over alleged interference in cases of police harrassment.
On May 18, the court disposed of eight cases of police abuse, saying that the PSHRC had gone beyond its powers granted in the Human Rights Act and “interfered” in these cases. The PSHRC, however, contends that under the Human Rights Act, it has the power to intervene in cases that are still on trial. The PSHRC attempted to stay the court order, saying that the order prevented its effective functioning and submitted a petition to the court, stating:
“the interpretation given by the High Court with regard to the powers and functions of the Commission are against the statement of objects and reasons and the preamble of the Act… because the impugned judgement has curtailed the powers of the panel, which is a fact-finding body with powers to conduct inquiry into the complaints of violation of human rights and which has been set up for better protection of the human rights.”
On Monday, October 24, the Supreme Court said it will examine the law to determine if the PSHRC can examine ongoing cases.