Human Rights Day: Why We Need To Clean Up Our Act NOW!

From cow vigilante violence to attack on freedom of speech: India needs to wake up, accept and act on the human rights violations on its own land

On 10 December 1948, the United Nations General Assembly adopted and proclaimed Universal Declaration of Human Rights and since then this day is being celebrated as Human Rights Day all over the world.

In the past few years, India saw a spike in number of cases of attacks by cow vigilante groups, hate crimes in the name of ‘love jihad’, crimes against women and children, denial of basic human rights to the LGBTQI community, abuse by armed groups and last but not the least, intimidation, death threats and killings to curb freedom speech and expression.

Source : AP

1. Cow vigilante violence and ‘Love Jihad’ cases

The Human Rights Watch report 2017 noted:

Mob attacks by extremist Hindu groups affiliated with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) against minority communities, especially Muslims and Dalits, have become a serious threat. In the first seven months of 2017, there were 26 attacks, and seven people were killed over rumors that they sold, bought, or killed cows for beef. “

READFrom Assam to Rajasthan, 7 cases of cow vigilantism in 2017

Cow Vigilantism Alwar, Alwar Cow vigilantism, Alwar lynching, Gau rahshaks Alwar,

After remaining quite for several months, PM Narendra Modi spoke up and said, “Killing people in the name of Gau Bhakti is not acceptable. This is not something Mahatma Gandhi would approve.” However, no strict action was taken by the government to curb this menace.

Hate crimes in the name of ‘Love Jihad’ (a word whose origin is attributed to far-right groups) saw an increase in 2017. The ongoing Hadiya case or the ‘Kerala Love Jihad’ case in the Supreme Court which made headlines this year is a proof of how religious paranoia has gripped our country.

READI have not got the freedom I wanted: Hadiya

Source:  The Indian Express

2. Attacks on the right to freedom of speech and expression

A staunch critic of right-wing politics, journalist Gauri Lankesh’s was shot dead by three unidentified men in Bangalore right outside her house.

READGauri Lankesh shot dead in Bengaluru. Twitter fumes in anger, calls for protests across the country

Gauri Lankesh shot dead

Sanjay Leela Bhansali’s Padmavati became the one of the most controversial topics of India in 2017. From Rajput Karni Sena to other fringe groups, the movie was dragged into the political arena with finally its release being deferred. While one of the BJP leaders of Haryana announced a prize money of Rs 10 crore on Deepika Padukone and Bhansali’s head, states like Rajasthan, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh banned the release of the movie.

READAll the outrageous things ‘hurt’ fringe groups said against Padmavati

Deepika Padukone in Padmavati, Padmavati | Courtesy: YouTube still | Photo created for

3. Crimes against women and children 

With #MeToo and Raya Sarkar controversial list, a number of women in India came forward to speak about the sexual harassment. Recently, National Crimes Record Bureau released data which showed that crimes  against women saw a rise of 2.9% in 2016 as compared to 2015.

READ80 Haryana girls quit school, sit on hunger strike to protest against molestation


Unfortunately, even children and minors became a victim of sexual abuse and assault and a number of cases made headlines this year with the latest one being the Kolkata sexual assault case.

READ: 5 cases of sexual assault against minors reported in 5 days; time to WAKE UP India!