NHRC tells Bihar Govt. to pay monetary relief to man injured in police firing

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New Delhi, Apr.1 : The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has recommended that the Government of Bihar pay Rs.seven lakh as monetary compensation to Kamleshwar Prasad Jaiswal, who was injured by indiscriminate firing by the police in an incident in July 1997.

Taking cognizance of Jaiswal's complaint lodged in Motihari, the NHRC described the shootout incident of July 17, 1997 as unfortunate. It said the incident had brought immense suffering to Jaiswal.

It maybe recalled that Jaiswal was passing by the police post in Motihari, when he was caught in the middle of indiscriminate firing by the police. He received a bullet injury on his face, which destroyed his jaw and totally disfigured his face. He was treated at three hospitals for more than a year. During this period, he had to undergo 22 operations and even then his condition could not become normal.

He submitted the complaint to the NHRC on December 26, 2007 and even at that time he was breathing with the aid of an apparatus fitted in his neck. According to the averments made in the complaint, ten more operations were required for restoration of normal health.

An FIR was registered on the date of incident itself at Motihari City, Police Station against the police personnel posted at Naka No.1 but as reported later by the Superintendent of Police of East Champaran, the investigation of the case culminated in an FIR and no one was brought to justice.

On May 18, 2007, the NHRC issued a notice to the Government of Bihar under Section 18(3) of the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 requiring it to show cause why monetary relief should not be given to the complainant.

The State government did not respond to the notice. On October 10, 2007 a reminder was sent, and it too did not evoke any response from the Bihar State government. Thereafter a final opportunity was given to the State government put forth its objection if any, against the grant of monetary relief. Inspite of the final reminder the Bihar State government has not come forward with any explanation.

In the light of these developments, the NHRC said Jaiswal had a definite cause to claim monetary relief from the government.

The Commission has also directed the Chief Secretary of Bihar to submit a compliance report alongwith proof of payment within eight weeks.

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