State Human Rights Commission oath function or Baptism function?

via GSK Menon published on April 25, 2011

On 23rd April 2011, all the Malayalam TV channels were showing whole day “BREAKING NEWS”, what was the great breaking news, an IPS officer took voluntary retirement and got appointed as Chairman of Kerala State Human Rights Commission. His name is Mr.Sibi Matthews. Is this such an earth shaking event ? The Government has choosen its own favourite and put him in a sensitive post. There was no selection by way of any advertisement inviting applications from all eligible persons. The Government wanted its own man or rather a pliable man to be the head of this organisation. Majority of the human rights violations occur in the Police department, what is the point in posting a policeman to supervise over his former colleagues and subordinates ?
 
The newspapers of 24th April gave details of the Oath taking ceremony of this officer. A galaxy of Bishops and Archbishops comprised the audience. It appeared to be a Christian Padre’s appointment ceremony not that of a Human Rights organisation chief’s. Is this fair and just ?
 
Everybody knows that religious terrorism is on the rise in most of the countries. Religious conversions is the root cause of all terrorism, according to former American President Bill Clinton. The Christian clergy is neck deep involved in conversion activities and even incite violence as witnessed in Kandhmal, Orissa. It is the Kerala Christian clergy which is spreading unrest, violence, and disharmony between communities in various parts of India. Religious conversion is the worst form of human rights violation. What is the signal being sent out by the new State Human Rights chief by assembling a huge number of church functionaries at his Oath taking ceremony ? Can the public expect any kind of justice from him especially in fights between communities involving the church and others ?
 
An RTI query needs to be sent to the Governor’s office to ascertain how the Guest List is prepared, who prepares it, how many religious leaders from other communities were invited ?
 
Another fact that needs to be debated is why such a big drama over an official being appointed. Oath taking is a simple formality, why make it into such a big function and waste thousands of rupees. After all it is not the President or Prime Minister who is taking oath,  it is only just another officer who secured the post because of his clout. Should it be made into such a big event, with the christian clergy in full strength to see a christian taking charge as chief of that organisation ?
 
The entire thing appears to me as a stage managed farce. Given the composition of the audience, let it not reflect in his duties.
 
It is time a PIL is filed to set out norms to select officials to posts like Human Rights, CIC, CVC, CEC, CAT, UPSC etc. Retired officials should not be thrust on the organisation and the people of this country. We deserve a better deal.

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