The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to report within four weeks on the status of the probe in its criminal case registered against Lawyers Collective.
The NHRC sought the report in response to petitions raising questions about the CBI’s move. In his petition, Henri Tiphagne, who is associated with Human Rights Defenders’ Alert-India, expressed grave concern over the case registered by the agency on June 13 against Lawyers Collective, its president Anand Grover and other unnamed functionaries.
NHRC said that complainant alleged that the CBI was trying to harass the lawyers for their humanitarian work.
The NHRC said in a statement that the complainant had sbumitted that Lawyers Collective was a group of lawyers with a mission to empower and change the status of marginalised groups through the effective use of law and engagement in human rights advocacy, legal aid and litigation.
“It is also mentioned that Mr. Grover was the UN Special Rapporteur on Right to Health between August 2008-July 2014 and Ms. Indira Jaising was an Additional Solicitor General of India between July 2009- May 2014 and a member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women between 2009-2012. It is also stated that registration of criminal cases by the CBI against this organisation is a step to intimidate and harass them for their human rights work,” observed the NHRC.
The Commission said it had also received a similar complaint from Maja Daruwala, senior advisor at Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative, expressing concern that Ms. Jaising and her husband were being victimised for the work that they had done in courts of law in their capacity as lawyers. Read the full story here.