Follow us on:   

India seeks re-election to UNHRC
September 23, 2014, 7:42 am

The World Report 2014 by Human Rights Watch praised India's independent judiciary, free media, and a "vibrant civil society", but rapped the state for "reluctance to hold public officials to account for abuses or dereliction of duty" [AP]

The World Report 2014 by Human Rights Watch praised India’s independent judiciary, free media, and a “vibrant civil society”, but rapped the state for “reluctance to hold public officials to account for abuses or dereliction of duty” [AP]

India will seek re-election to the UN’s Geneva-based human rights watchdog for a second consecutive term, Indian officials said on Tuesday.

Elections will be held in October during the ongoing 69th session of the UN General Assembly.

India’s current term at the 47-seat Human Rights Council ends on December 31, 2014.

New Delhi is seeking re-election to the UN body for the period of 2015-17.

India will compete with Bangladesh, Qatar, Thailand and Indonesia in the Asia group in which four seats will be up for election.

In 2013, China, Russia, South Africa, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, Algeria and Cuba won 3-year seats unopposed at the council.

“The support of member states for India’s candidature in the human rights council elections would be greatly appreciated,” a note from the Indian mission said.

The body aims to shine a spotlight on rights abuses by adopting resolutions.

The council members are elected for a period of three years by the majority of members of the General Assembly through direct and secret ballot.

According to the council website, the General Assembly takes into account the candidate states’ contribution to the promotion and protection of human rights, as well as their voluntary pledges and commitments in this regard.

The World Report 2014 by Human Rights Watch praised India’s independent judiciary, free media, and a “vibrant civil society”, but rapped the state for “reluctance to hold public officials to account for abuses or dereliction of duty”.

“India took positive steps in 2013 by strengthening laws protecting women and children, and, in several important cases, prosecuting state security force personnel for extrajudicial killings. The impact of these developments will depend in large part on effective follow-up by central government authorities. The year also saw increased restrictions on Internet freedom; continued marginalization of Dalits, tribal groups, religious minorities, sexual and gender minorities, and people with disabilities; instances of remained marginalized and often without redress; and persistent impunity for abuses linked to insurgencies, particularly in Maoist areas, Jammu and Kashmir, Manipur, and Assam,” said HRW.

In a blow to gay rights activists, India’s top court in December last year ruled that gay sex is an offence punishable with up to life imprisonment, reinforcing a British colonial law which bans homosexual sex.

The UN Human Rights Council’s membership is based on equitable geographical distribution, with 13 seats each for African and Asia-Pacific states, eight seats for Latin American and Caribbean states, seven for Western European and other states and six for Eastern European states.

 

TBP and Agencies

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Anti-Spam * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.