The government is attempting to pass the PREVENTION OF TORTURE BILL, 2010 after it has received the nod from the cabinet on April 8, 2010. Although the Government of India signed the United Nations Convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or Punishment (UNCAT) almost 13 years ago, it has failed to ratify it till date. Coming under heavy pressure from the International community and civil society this proposed Bill is an attempt to “amend prevailing laws” so as to make torture a punishable offence. But as we shall see further, such a proposed legislation is only playing lip-service to the obligations set by the UNCAT and is nothing but a mere eyewash. The proposed legislation is not only a climb down from the standards set by the UNCAT but in many ways is in direct opposition to the basic norm of non-derogability of the Right of Freedom from Torture.
Posted by rlssec