Aggrieved persons free to file complaints with commissions: Calcutta High Court

The Calcutta High Court has ordered that any individual who has suffered on account of post poll violence in Bengal is “at liberty” to file complaints “along with supporting documents” to the National Human Rights Commission, West Bengal Human Rights Commission, National Commission for Women and National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

A five-member bench of the Calcutta High Court has ordered that the aforesaid commissions “in turn will forward those complaints to the Director General of Police, West Bengal, immediately”. The complaints can be made either by way of hard copy or online.

The directions were passed on Tuesday during the resumed hearing of petitions pertaining to post-poll violence in Bengal. A host of allegations were made by different individuals in different petitions.

“The state has responded to some of the petitions whereas in some, affidavits-in-opposition are yet to be filed,” read the order passed on Tuesday. The High Court recorded that at the previous hearing, it had requested the state’s Advocate General to apprise the court about any designated e-mail id to enable the aggrieved persons to lodge their complaints online. “…It was on the allegation of the petitioners that they were not permitted to lodge complaints in the police station. In some cases, they were unable to do so as they had to run away from their places of residence. Today, this information has not been furnished. More time has been sought to furnish the same,” the order read.

The High Court also recorded that, at the previous hearing, it had sought the number of complaints received by individuals on account of post poll-violence.

“The information as regards the number of complaints received by the Director General of Police from the aforesaid Commissions has not been furnished in court. Request has been for grant of time,” the court recorded. The court has given a week’s time to the state to furnish the number of such complaints received by aggrieved individuals.

The Calcutta High Court had, earlier this month, constituted a five-member bench to take stock of the post-poll violence and directed the state government to file a report “specifying the areas where violence” took place and steps taken to control it.

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