Saturday, March 18, 2006

Writ filed to criminalise 'torture'

Kathmandu, March 18-A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed in the SC on friday seeking its order to government authorities to declare torture as a crime and make it punishable.

Advocates Rajendra Ghimire and Kedar Prasad Dahal filed the PIL seeking the court order to the PMO and Cabinet, the Ministry of Law to amend the Compensation Act 1997 to include torture as a crime.

Citing that Nepal is a signatory party to international laws, including UN Declaration on Human Rights 1948, International Covenant on Political and Civil Rights 1966 and Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment 1984, they sought endorsement of the provisions.

In the context that UN special rapporteur, Prof Manfred Nowak, reported that security forces have been involved in torturing people, the two asked why such cruelties have not been declared illegal.

“Torture, a serious crime, should be prohibited and perpetrators punished by endorsing rights conventions in our domestic Act,” the petitioners added.

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