ACHR seeks more compensation from NHRC for Mizo juvenile detainee's death

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New Delhi, Aug. 23 (ANI): The Asian Centre for Human Rights (ACHR) has described the compensation amount of Rs.300,000 awarded by the National Human Rights Commission to the next of kin of 13-year-old Lalnunpuia as "highly insensitive" and "inadequate".

Lalnunpuia was a Mizo juvenile detainee.

On August 17, the NHRC directed the State of Mizoram to pay the compensation.

Lalnunpuia died after being tortured in the Herald for Christ's Children Home at Lungleng in Aizawl, Mizoram, on July 13, 2009.

"The award of Rs. 300,000 to the next kin of Lalnunpuia smacks of insensitivity of the NHRC and the NHRC must award the same level of compensation for each case of violation of the right to life," said ACHR's Director Suhas Chakma.

"The award of compensation is not enough. Unless the culprits are prosecuted, torture and murder of the juveniles will continue to take place. The NHRC must therefore monitor the criminal trial of the accused responsible for murder of Lalnunpuia and ensure their prosecution," Chakma further stated.

The NHRC took up the case after it received a complaint from the ACHR on August 3, 2009 alleging torture of Lalnunpuia, son of Rinsanga of Chaltlang Lily in Aizawl, Mizoram by the officials of Herald for Christ's Children Home for alleged disobedience which later resulted in his death.

In its report to the NHRC, the Superintendent of Police (SP), Aizawl confirmed that the child died as a result of torture and that there were several injuries on the dead body.

Taking a note of the report, the NHRC issued a show cause notice, among others, asking the state government of Mizoram to explain as to why monetary relief shold not be given to the next of kin of the deceased.

In reply, the state government of Mizoram had urged that the decision be deferred till the conclusion of the criminal trial.

The NHRC rejected the plea of the state government and directed it to pay Rs. 300,000 to the victim's family.

In its order the NHRC stated, "The plea made by the State Govt. is devoid of merit. The proceeding before this Commission is independent of any other proceeding which may be going on at any other forum. Prima-facie there is enough material to prove that the child was subjected to assault and the authorities of the Home failed in their duty to give adequate protection to the child. The State Govt. cannot, therefore, evade its liability to make monetary amends." (ANI)

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