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Human Rights Day - A Local Perspective
Anuj Kumar Verma12/10/2019 10:14:48 PM
Human Rights Day was founded in year 1950 in remembrance of December 10th, 1948 when the General Assembly of the UN adopted and proclaimed Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Declaration specifies universal values and a shared standard of achievement for everyone in every country. Further, On 25 June 1993, representatives of 171 States adopted the Vienna Declaration and Plan of Action marking culmination of a long process of review over current status of human rights in the world. The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action (1993) reaffirmed the commitment for protection of Human Rights by the States regardless of their political, economic & cultural systems. The Vienna Declaration also makes concrete recommendations for strengthening and harmonizing the monitoring capacity of the United Nations system. United Nations Secretary-General Boutros Boutros-Ghali, in a message to the Conference, told the delegates that by adopting the Vienna Declaration and Plan of Action they had renewed the international community's commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights. He saluted the meeting for having forged "a new vision for global action for human rights into the next century".
No doubt, this day is celebrated to launch a collective campaign for generating awareness about human rights of citizens all over the world. Main objective is to improve the physical, social, cultural and spiritual well being and welfare of the vulnerable groups of people, all over the world, like women, minorities, youth, poor, disabled person, indigenous people and etc. Additionally, the day aims to enlighten us about how our rights are a foundation of sustainable development and peaceful societies.
But, it is really a matter of serious discussion, today, whether the Universal Declaration and Proclamation of Human Rights, adopted by General Assembly of the UN on 10th December 1948 and further reviewed by representatives of 171 States in Vienna Declaration & Action on June 25th, 1973 have helped the citizens, all over the world really OR have/ had relevance in only two three dozen developed nations in the Western part of this world. Few Human Rights Organisations act or pose to act like Human Rights Watch Dogs and generally are complaining about States excesses; Which may sometimes be true, but only outcome of terrorism spread by fanatic forces and an uncontrollable violent bloody resistance launched against States. A number of Human Rights Organisations are really doing good enough to address practical problems among common masses affected by wars, local conflicts, disabled ones, rural women, poverty stricken people, drug and human trafficking, child labour, providing & supplementing Health care in war stiffen or remote areas.
Apart from problems of poverty, unemployment, global warming, droughts, floods, Tsunamis, major earthquakes, polluted air/water & soil, depleting ground water & fuel reserves, most of the underdeveloped or developing nations are faced with problems of terrorism, ethnic/religious intolerance, cross border conflicts, drug trafficking etc. When between thirty to forty percent population of a country is below poverty line, I think the most important duty of that nation with regards to protection of Human Rights should be to prioritize measures for economic upliftment of its below poverty line or lower middle class population. When terrorists have become successful in suppressing majority population in few cities of the country, again, one of the most important duty of that nation, with regards to protection of Human Rights of its citizens, will be to damage and destroy terrorism from its roots and to ensure peace, prosperity & security in that disturbed part of the country. What type of relevance has this UN Declaration and Proclamation in gulf countries, in Asia and Africa. What relevance, today, it has when the U.S. withdrew from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in October 2017 and June 2018 respectively.
I think there is a need to redraw and stipulate the "Human Rights" for Under Developed and Developing nations as "Right to Equality", "Right to have safe and healthy food", "Right to grow", "Right to Standard Education", "Right to best Health-care", "Right to Peace & Security", "Right to have House and shelters" without any discrimination or division on basis of color, caste, creed, religion, region or ethnicity.
Every citizen should have equal rights; No special status to any region, religion or ethnic group. Such special status only divide our society. Financial support should be given only to poor people. In India, present model of caste-ism has proved to be counter productive and further deepened divide among different sections of our society. All citizens should be equal and should be treated equally. No Dalits and Swarns; There should be only two classes Economically Weaker and Economically Well Off citizens; This classification, also, should be used only to extend benefits of various upliftment schemes to poor people.
A major Violation of Human Rights is dumping of huge plastic wastes by Western countries in Asia; thereby polluting Asian seas and soil badly, thereby posing serious threat to health of citizens and agricultural crops of Asian Countries. This is a grave Human Rights Violation, being done by majors, themselves, who signed the UN Decoration and Proclamation on 10th December 2019. After being denied entry by countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam, China due to resistance shown by public of these countries; now the thousands of tonnes of dumps of plastic waste are being diverted towards India, Hongkong and other countries in the region, putting health of humans as well as animals & marine life to a risk of big Catastrophe.
Another serious violation of Human Rights, going on increasingly, since last two decade is adulteration in milk and food. There are repeated warnings from important forums about adulteration in food & milk, I think again this become an important duty of a nation to save it's citizens from serious diseases caused by adulterated food & milk. Willful contamination of milk and food with toxic chemicals, causing serious diseases, should be treated as serious offence as serious as an attempt to murder or a rape. Apart from urea, soap, detergents, oils, adulterants like acid, starch, table sugar and chemicals like formalin are added to the milk. Most of the chemicals used as adulterants are poisonous and cause serious health hazards. I am really surprised that the concerned agency does not bother to ponder enough upon 24X7 availability of milk and milk products in Jammu and Kashmir, even during peak summer season.
I think this is a big Human Rights Violation!
Every citizen of a country has inherited rights to have access to safe food, the best possible medical treatment, good education for his children without being subjected to any discrimination. But, unfortunately, because of heavy population pressure, some mismanagement and malpractices adopted & promoted by few vested agencies & few private players; Medical treatment, had become a reason for harassment and financial disaster to a common man. Just pray to God that you or any of your family members don't have medical emergency in Jammu city, especially on Sundays or nights. You won't get any senior consultant or surgeon, during nights, whether you been to government or a private hospital. Only two and half years back, on one Sunday, one of my known persons was to be shifted to the GMC where he was advised to be put on dialysis, immediately. On an inquiry, we were shocked to know from the authorities of GMC as well as Super Specialty Hospital, no Nephrologist was available to start the dialysis. The only senior nephrologist in the city was on leave; even local private hospitals had no arrangement to meet such an emergency. The patient, who was in a critical condition, was to be shifted to Superspeciality Hospital Narayana Katra; where he had to part away an handsome amount of money to get the required precedures started. Superspeciality Hospital Narayana Katra is constructed by the SMVDSB on donations and alms provided by Hindu pilgrims, but, surprisingly people of Jammu region, including Hindus, except from a minuscule area, are charged commercially, if they wish to get healthcare facilities in this Superspeciality Hospital. I think this is a big violation of Human Rights of local population, especially Hindus, of Jammu region. There is a mushroom growth of diagnostic laboratories and even very expensive private Intensive Care Units have started flourishing near government hospitals. Such private Intensive Care Units have only resident doctors, on duty; Consultants are called on "Paid Call Basis" and the poor patient admitted there, normally, has to part away amount in tens of thousands of rupees, every day. Doctors employed by the government should be well paid; so that they don't have to do private practice during morning and evening, hours. Can't Government devise out a mechanism for starting reasonably paid evening clinics in government hospitals, where receipts are shared equally by the practicing doctors and the government. Each of us must be aware about REFERRAL manufacturing of drugs & medicines, which are specially manufactured for small groups of doctors and are mostly available only in shops within premises of their clinics. A serious violation of Human Rights. I really hope that with more improvement in functioning of District Hospitals & rural infrastructure, opening of new Medical Colleges, AIIMS in the UT shall definitely bring about better healthcare and much relief to poor masses.
NO DOUBT, NUMBER OF ABERRANTS IS NOT MUCH BUT QUITE VISIBLE. We, all, need to realise the fact that we are about to step in year 2020; This is utmost duty of a nation to provide a fool proof and the most effective healthcare system to all its citizens irrespective of their socio-economic status? No doubt, this is a major challenge for authorities, but healthcare facilities available in cities like Chandigarh, New Delhi, Mumbai, Jaipur, Bikaner, Southern states can be good examples to study and implement.
The citizens have also Right to know about procedures adopted by agriculturists in their fields to grow a crop, rather full information about an agricultural product right from agricultural field upto consumers' dinning table; Which types of fertilizers, insecticides, pesticides, herbicides and how many of these sprays are used by an agriculturist in a field, quantity of toxic chemical residues on agriculture crop; whether that agricultural produce is safe enough to be consumed by human beings? One and half year back only, I happened to meet one Guava orchardist at Purmandal who told me that he sprays liquid mixed with a small quantity of chloroperiphos directly on the fruit of Guava as insecticide and distributes the fruit crop among his friends and relatives. I was shocked and hastily tried to convince him not to use water mixed with chloroperiphos on Guava crop in future; otherwise he is gifting poisonous Guava fruits laced with toxic chemical residues to his known persons who might be exposed to serious diseases.
Unfortunately, despite of having a big force of agriculture technocrats, we never come to know about such information, what to talk about absence of not so expensive system of labeling of crops.
Similarly, we rarely have information about contents & ingredients used in preparing sweets and bakeries even by big sweets & bakery showrooms. Despite of making huge daily sales, sometimes in lacs, these big sweets vendors, manufacturing sweets, on large scale, in automated or semi automated workshops, seldom care to disclose mandatory information about contents & ingredients on sweets box. The concerned government agency does not seem to show any interest to ensure display of such important information on the sweet box. I think this is an important fundamental Human Right to know about procedures adopted, contents, ingredients of a product before it's consumption by them.
Toxic chemicals like calcium carbide, Ethopan, Ethylene in Chinese Sachets, Oxytocin and other chemical growth promotors have been found to be used for artificial ripening of fruits and vegetables in fields, stores, transportation vehicles and markets; These are generally carcinogenic - Indeed a big Human Rights Violation going on unchecked, usually in most cities of our country. The government need to devise out a strong mechanism, with stringent laws against violators as well as for the responsible agencies, to root out this big aberration, affecting health of its citizens badly.
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