Govt set to establish National Commission on Human Rights

ISLAMABAD: The government is set to establish an independent National Commission on Human Rights for the protection of human rights in the country.

Chairman National Assembly Standing Committee on Human Rights Riaz Fatiana on Thursday presented in the sNational Assembly the committee’s report for the formation of the National Commission on Human Rights. It is expected that the bill for the formation of the independent National Commission on Human Rights will be presented in the current session of the National Assembly.

The proposed bill for the formation of the National Commission on Human Rights stated that the federal government shall constitute a commission to be known as the National Commission on Human Rights and it will have a member from each province, the Federally Administrated Tribal Areas, Gilgit-Baltistan, Islamabad Capital Territory and two members from the minorities community having knowledge and background of human rights.

It stated that the chairperson of the commission will be a person who has been a judge of the Supreme Court or High Courts preferably having knowledge and background of human rights, or any other eminent person of known integrity, competence and experience and have a term of four years. The federal government shall in consultation with parties present in parliament and prominent civil society organisations recommend three names for the post of the chairperson and two names in case of each vacancy of member to the prime minister.

The president on receiving advice of the prime minister shall appoint the chairperson and members of the commission. The headquarters of the commission shall be at Islamabad and offices may be set up at all provincial headquarters and, in any other part of the country as the commission may determine.

On the removal of the member of the commission, the draft bill stated that the president on the advice of the PM may remove chairperson from the office or any other member if the chairperson or such other member, as the case may be guilty of misconduct, is adjudged insolvent, is unfit to continue in office by reason of infirmity of mind or body or is convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for an offence.

At any time when the chairperson is absent or is unable to perform function of his office due to any cause, or in the event of the occurrence of any vacancy in the office of the chairperson by reason of his death, resignation or otherwise, the president on the advice of the prime minister shall appoint a person from amongst the members of the commission to act as a chairperson until the chairperson resumes of his office, or as the case may be, until the appointment of the new chairperson to fill such post.

The commission shall inquire into, suo motu or a petition submitted by a victim or any person on his behalf into complaint of violation of human rights. The commission shall make an application to court for becoming a party in any proceeding involving in any allegation of violation of human rights pending before a court with the approval of such court. The commission may visit any jail where persons are lodged for purpose of treatment, reformation or protection or investigation to examine the living conditions of the inmates. The commission reviews the safeguards provided by or under the Constitution or any law for the time being in force for protection of human rights and recommends adoption of new legislation, the amendment of existing laws and adoption or amendment of administrative measures for effective implementation. The NEWS

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