NEW DELHI: The Centre today got a week's time from Supreme Court to inform it about the proposal to set up a nodal agency to coordinate on the issue of hate crimes and racial violence, especially against the people of North East living in other states.
When the matter came up for hearing before a bench headed by Chief Justice T S Thakur, Additional Solicitor General Maninder Singh said "I will take instructions from Ministry of Home and inform about the issue of nodal agency." The bench, also comprising Justices D Y Chandrachud and L Nageswara Rao, accepted the plea of the law officer and posted the matter for hearing on October 28.
The court on October 18 had expressed displeasure over the steps taken to address the issues of northeastern people, many of whom have fallen victims to hate crimes and racial violence in the past. The apex court had stressed that there should be a nodal agency to address the issues of the Northeastern people and such an agency, at the time of need, could be asked to implement measures and coordinate with various departments.
The bench had said the Bezbaruah committee, set up by the Union Home Ministry on February 5, 2014 after several incidents of hate crimes, had made several immediate and short term measures along with long term measures and all this should not remain only on paper. The bench, which has been hearing a batch of PILs filed in 2014 following several incidents of hate crimes in Delhi against persons hailing from Northeast, had also said that India had signed International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination way back in 1965.
The Bezbaruah panel was set up by MHA on February 5, 2014, to suggest "suitable remedial measures" which could be taken, in the wake of attacks on the people from the Northeast in Delhi and other parts of the country including the death of youth Nido Tania, a student from Arunachal Pradesh. The petition filed by Karma Dorjee and others had said that Bezbaruah panel had recommended changes in the IPC to curb and punish incidents of racial violence targeting people from Northeast region.
The petition had alleged that people from Northeastern region, who move out of their states in search of better opportunities for studies and jobs, were subjected to racial taunts and violence on a daily basis due to their physical appearance at the hands of people of their own country.