Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Sunday said people should be told about their duties and responsibilities as awareness about rights alone would not serve the purpose.
“Advocates, judges and Human Rights Commissions in various states are working to ensure human rights of the people, but simultaneously, people should also be told about their duties and responsibilities as awareness about rights alone would not serve the purpose,” he said.
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Khattar was speaking as the chief guest at the ‘All India State Human Rights Commissions Meet’ at Chandigarh Judicial Academy in Chandigarh. It was organized by the Haryana Human Rights Commission. The word ‘human rights’ has been derived from western civilization but in our culture, selfless service is emphasised, the CM said.
“By rendering selfless service, we can make the society more prosperous. Even Lord Krishna who had delivered the celestial message of Gita on the holy land of Kurukshetra described Karma as our right,” he said. A chapter on fundamental duties of citizens has been enshrined in the Constitution and there is a need to revisit it, the Chief Minister said.
While advocating the precept of ‘Live and Let Live’, Khattar said fear of the law alone could not help create a civilized society. “We have always laid stress on the principle of Sarvajan Hitay Sarvajan Sukhay. I consider the entire 2.5 crore people of the state as my family, and it is my responsibility to work for their welfare”, he added.
Earlier, Justice Cyriac Joseph, member of the National Human Rights Commission, New Delhi, said that protection of human rights should start from us. “If we are not protecting human rights of the employees working under our control, we had no right to speak about human rights,” he said.
Human Rights Commissions won’t be effective until “we maintained our independence, but we should not cross the lakshman rekha,” Justice Joseph said. Human rights are available to every human being, be it an ordinary citizen, a labourer, policemen or security officer and nobody has given us the right to violate them, he said.
He said that time had come for us to stand up and speak for the security forces who put their life at risk for protecting the human rights of others. Human Rights Commissions are not substitutes for judiciary but supplement the judiciary, he said.
“Therefore, there should not be a feeling of oneupmanship or competition but of cooperation and coordination as both worked for a common cause,” he said. Human Rights Commissions are the least expensive grievance redressal forum as one can file petition from anywhere in the country, he said.
“These are also working as alternative dispute redressal forums,” he added. Chairperson of Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission, Mumbai, Justice S R Bannurmath, said, “It is high time that we stood together and emerged out of our self-centered attitude and took the stand to protect the human rights of others”.
Acting Chairperson of the Haryana Human Rights Commission, Justice H S Bhalla, said that the commission was playing a significant role in effective implementation of human rights without which good governance could not be achieved.