NHRC seeks report on mental health of central forces

National Human Rights Commission (NHRC), Delhi. (Photo | PTI)

BHUBANESWAR: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has sought a detailed report from the home ministry on measures taken to address the psycho-physical health issues of personnel employed in the country’s central forces.

The apex human rights panel has asked the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), Border Security Force (BSF), Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) and Assam Rifles to submit the report within six weeks.

The order came following a petition filed by human rights activist and Supreme Court lawyer Radhakanta Tripathy, who brought to the notice of the Commission a series of suicides and fratricides in the central forces, armed forces and paramilitary forces. He listed events across the country in which members of the military committed suicide or killed their colleagues, allegedly due to mental health issues.

Pursuant to a previous order, the Ministry of Defense had submitted a report on all the issues raised by the author. Although it has been four months since the Defense Ministry report was submitted, reports from CRPF, BSF, SSB and Assam Rifles are awaited.

Citing several cases of crimes and suicides in the country’s defense and paramilitary forces, Tripathy alleged that mental health is not taken into account while evaluating the efficiency and performance of personnel involved in the defense and paramilitary forces.

“Mental health is a legal and constitutional right of each and every citizen of India, including defense and paramilitary personnel who have been entrusted with the ultimate responsibility of protecting the nation and maintaining law and order” , he pointed.

  चिकन पॉक्स होने पर भूलकर भी न करें ये गलतियां, इन चीजों से करें परहेज, जल्‍द म‍िलेगा आराम

Reports have been requested from the central forces on the measures taken to assess the mental health of armed personnel irrespective of their rank and hierarchy, periodic monitoring, physical, psychological and psychometric evaluation of the forces and measures for mental health interventions community based.

“The Commission has taken this issue seriously. The reports are necessary to evaluate and address the concerns,” the NHRC order stated.

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