Friday, 1 July, 2022
HomeIndiaViolation of law can't be condoned under pretext of human rights, India...

Violation of law can’t be condoned under pretext of human rights, India tells UNHCHR chief

The statement by MEA Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava comes in response to UNHCHR chief Michelle Bachelet's comments over restrictions on NGOs and arrest of activists in India.

Text Size:

New Delhi/Geneva: India on Tuesday strongly reacted to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet’s concern over restrictions on NGOs and arrest of activists, saying violations of law cannot be condoned under the pretext of human rights and a more informed view of the matter was expected of the UN body.

External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Anurag Srivastava also asserted that India was a democratic polity based on the rule of law and an independent judiciary.

“We have seen some comments by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on an issue relating to the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act (FCRA). India is a democratic polity based on the rule of law and an independent judiciary.

“The framing of laws is obviously a sovereign prerogative. Violations of law, however, cannot be condoned under the pretext of human rights. A more informed view of the matter was expected of a UN body,” Srivastava said.

Earlier, Bachelet expressed concern over the restrictions on foreign funding for the NGOs and the arrest of activists in the country.

She appealed to the Indian Government to “safeguard the rights of human rights defenders and NGOs, and their ability to carry out their crucial work” on behalf of the many groups they represent.

“India has long had a strong civil society, which has been at the forefront of groundbreaking human rights advocacy within the country and globally,” she said in a statement.

“But I am concerned that vaguely defined laws are increasingly being used to stifle these voices,” she said.

Bachelet specifically cited as “worrying” the use of the FCRA, which prohibits the receipt of foreign funds “for any activities prejudicial to the public interest.”

As per the amended FCRA law, furnishing of Aadhaar numbers by office-bearers of NGOs has become mandatory for registration. The Act also provides for reduction in administrative expenses of any NGO receiving foreign funding, from 50 per cent to 20 per cent of annual funds to ensure spending on their main objectives.

The government has maintained that the legislation was not against any NGO and was an effort to maintain transparency.


Also read: India expresses concern over raging military conflict between Armenia, Azerbaijan


 

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism

Most Popular

×