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Police reforms must be priority for new governments in 5 Indian states: AHRC
Human rights body the Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has congratulated all the candidates who have secured a victory in the elections to the State Legislative Assemblies that have concluded in the four states and a union territory of India, i.e. in Assam, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, and Puducherry.

It welcomed that elections were largely held in a peaceful manner, and the contesting political parties have accepted the results declared by the Election Commission of India. The AHRC called upon the new governments that will be formed in all the five jurisdictions to take up police and justice institution reforms as a priority subject for the next five years.

"This involves commitment of adequate resources and ensuring informed public participation in the process. Perhaps here again the Kerala State Police Department could lead the process and the new state government to be formed be a model for its counterparts in the country," the AHRC said in a release.

Stating that these elections are held in one of the most important times for India, it deplored that over the past six decades, no government in India has placed priority on justice institution reforms. The incumbent Union Government led by the National Democratic Alliance is no different, said the AHRC.

It said that the alarming and the stillborn nature of affairs in justice delivery in the country have failed to attract the government's attention. This, AHRC said despite the Chief Justice of the country making a passionate plea to the Prime Minister in a public function held four weeks ago.

If the situation continues, it cautioned that it has the potential to snowball into a complete collapse of the justice delivery mechanism in the country, from which a recovery, if at all possible, will be long and painful.

AHRC observed that in the entire country it is only in the state of Kerala that the government has positively engaged on refining the justice delivery process. Initiating the process, the incumbent Director General of Police (DGP) T.P. Senkumar has made a public call, seeking advice and support to modernise the state police.

However, it said one of the incidents that rocked Kerala during the last days of the election campaign was the rape and brutal murder of a law student. Since the murder was reported, AHRC accused that the state police have failed to make any breakthrough in the investigation.

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