Human Rights Day is celebrated on the 10th December every year to commemorate the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), which was adopted and proclaimed by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1948 as the Shared standard yardstick to protect human rights across the globe.
The National Human Rights Commission, India has organised different events, including a nationwide Short Films on Human Rights Award competition, in run up to the celebration of Human Rights Day. The three Best short films on human rights, will be given awards of Rs. 1 lakh, Rs. 75 thoUSAnd and Rs. 50 thousand along with trophies and citations on the occasion. Some NHRC publications will also be released.
Besides, this the prize winning paintings by children will be displayed at an exhibition at the venue of the function, which will also be showcasing the journey of the Commission through photographs of its various events and activities towards protection and promotion of human rights since the last Human Rights Day.
During the last 24 years, since its inception on the 12th October, 1993, the Commission has endeavored to promote a culture of human rights. The NHRC, like most of the human rights institutions in the world, is a recommendatory body as per the Protection of Human Rights Act passed by Parliament.
Apart from looking into the complaints of the human rights violations, the Commission’s functions also include reviewing safeguards provided under the Constitution or any Law, make recommendations for effective implementation of International Conventions/Covenants, undertake research and organise seminars and discussion programmes on human rights issues, spread awareness about human rights and encourage efforts of non-governmental organisations towards promotion of human rights.
It has also been organising Camp Sittings for disposal of pending cases and Open Hearings of complaints of atrocities against Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in different parts of the country for the redressal of their problems. It has also been visiting, State-wise, different districts to make an assessment of enforcement of various measures related to human rights and implementation of welfare schemes so as to come out with recommendations for the governments, committed to ensuring good governance.
It has made a number of interventions on key issues of human rights, which include, among others, issues of bonded and child labour, prison reforms, right to health, right to food, mental healthcare, rights of persons with disability, silicosis, illegal clinical drug trials, pesticides in food items, pricing of drugs, corporate-social responsibility, manual scavenging and sanitation, human rights of women.
In order to spread awareness about human rights and its activities, the Commission, apart from publication of monthly Newsletter in Hindi and English, has published more than 80 books and journals. Apart from the Centre and the State Governments, several organisations, NGOs of Human Rights Defenders and media have actively supported and supplemented the work of the NHRC towards promotion and protection of human rights.