People’s Watch has been deeply disturbed by the state of incidents of custodial torture and violence including those leading to deaths that have shaken the conscience of, well-meaning citizens, the government including different sections of the police itself.
However, it is time for us to appreciate your good self in these very difficult and challenging moments to have come forward with these 41 guidelines. We have read them very carefully and meticulously seen that they are grounded squarely in the matters arising out of the very recent custodial deaths that have taken place in the state.
Thanking an official of your stature is not only our greatest pleasure but equally our responsibility and we therefore also assure you that on our part and the part of all civil society organizations in the State associated and with which we partner, we will undertake a campaign on these guidelines so that different sections of civil society will become more aware of the SOP and its 41 guidelines.
The above 41 guidelines, however, cannot be effectively monitored if your good self does not authorize meaningful and trustful monitoring mechanisms to function from within and report to your good self through your very efficient zonal IGs and City Commissioners/ Additional Commissioners who work on the ground. Such a mechanism can be created by your good self by appointing good members who are fair, non-party political and known for their honesty in their public life who are appointed as Members of the State and District Police Complaints Authority, as mandated in the judgement of the Hon’ble Supreme Court sixteen long years ago in 2006 in Prakash Singh v/s Union of India. If such State and District Police Complaints Authorities are headed by the retired High Court judges at the State level and retired judges at the District level, such a body of over 120 persons in the State will bring you sufficient feedback on the actual implementation of the SOP and 41 guidelines on the ground.