Access to Justice During Covid-19


The novel coronavirus or COVID-19 has wreaked havoc across the world since late 2019. Its transmission has impacted millions in more than 200 countries, effecting their economic, physical and social realities. In March 2020, the World Health Organisation declared it a global pandemic.

This infectious diseases - to which there is no known vaccine or antidote - has thrown unprecedented challenges to national and international governance systems. The response to contain it has been accompanied by crackdowns to enforce rules, in which many have suffered, as well as increased surveillance, while basic freedoms of movement, assembly, employment, and information have been put on hold. Much of these restrictions are understandable at a time when there is a crisis of survival.  Yet the lockdowns have disproportionately adversely affected those who are already the most vulnerable. The role of criminal justice institutions, as enforcers and overseers of many of the measures to tackle the pandemic, thus become crucial.

CHRI's work is geared towards ensuring that the response to the COVID-19 pandemic, especially by criminal justice institutions is human rights compliant. This section is a repository of this work.

RESOURCES

 
 

Letters and Submissions

CHRI Petitions NHRC to investigate 15 deaths following alleged police excesses during COVID-19 lockdown May 16, 2020

Ministry to Social Justice and Empowerment directs the education Ministry to review the accessibility of online education for students with disabilities during lockdown after Javed Abidi Foundation's webinar with CHRI and other intervention

Letter to PMO by Javed Abidi Foundation on challenges faced by individuals with different disabilities during the pandemic and possible interventions. Here is the note on Points for Urgent Consideration.

NITI Aayog Responds to CHRI’s Letter on Opening Healthcare Facilities for Non-Covid Patients (April 22, 2020)

On arbitrary arrests of two scholars from Jamia Milia Islamia (To National Human Rights Commission, April 20, 2020)

On arbitrary arrests of two scholars from Jamia Milia Islamia (To Delhi Minorities Commission, April 20, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Mr. Amitabh Kant NITI Aayog, April 19, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Dr. V. K. Paul, Member, NITI Aayog, April 19, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Mr. Amarjeet Sinha, Prime Minister’s Office, April 19, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Mr. Amit Khare Ministry of Human Resource Development, April 19, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Mr. Ravi Mital Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India, April 19, 2020)

On opening health care facilities for non-COVID patients (To Ms. Vandana Gugnani, Ministry Of Health NITI Aayog, April 19, 2020)


Public Engagement

Blog post by Venkatesh Nayak on RTI Reveals CPIO Of Chief Labour Commissioner's Office has no Data About Stranded Migrant Workers Despite April 2020 Enumeration Circular 

Blog post by Venkatesh Nayak on Inactive State Information Commissions and CHRI's Rapid Telephone Survey findings

CHRI Staff, Madhurima Dhanuka  on the Webinar- Justice during a pandemic : Legal empowerment crisis

CHRI Staff, Venkatesh Nayak  on the Webinar - Taking Stock of Disability Rights Advocacy in India & Steps Ahead


News Media

COVID-19: Justice during a Pandemic (namati.org)

Combating Coronavirus in Small States: Leaving No One Behind – International Frameworks and the Threat to ESC Rights in SIDS (Island Rights)

India’s coronavirus lockdown is bringing out the worst in its police force (Quartz India)

How Far Should Police Go in Enforcing Coronavirus Lockdowns? ( New York Times)

India: Police under fire for using violence to enforce coronavirus lockdown (dw.com)

UN rights chief urges quick action by governments to prevent devastating impact of COVID-19 in places of detention (un.org)

Preventing COVID-19 outbreak in prisons: a challenging but essential task for authorities (euro.who.int)

Political prisoners should be among first released in pandemic response, says UN rights chief (un.org)

Preparedness, prevention and control of COVID-19 in prisons and other places of detention (euro.who.int)