The Manipur Human Rights Commission (MHRC) has directed the Director General of Police and Social Welfare director to monitor the drug de-addiction centres in the state on SOPs to be followed while running the centres to prevent human rights violation faced by the inmates.
In an application sent to Police and Social Welfare departments by MHRC, it stated that the commission had received numerous complaints in connection with human rights violations at the de-addiction centres running in the state. To ascertain the human rights violation, the commission had conducted inspection drives at various centres last year led by its acting chairperson, Khaidem Mani, accompanied by media persons and NGOs.
The drives covered as many as seven de-addiction centres operating in various districts of Manipur. During the visit, the commission noted lack of infrastructure and also came across lodging of inmates forcefully without consent of their parents by picking them up in an arbitrary manner, it added.
The MHRC further stated that to prevent such consequences and ensure human rights of drug users while undergoing treatment, the commission had resolved that each centre should maintain SOPs strictly. For this, the concerned departments such as police and social welfare should monitor the centres.
According to the guidelines, NGOs and de-addiction centres should be registered under existing acts of Parliament or state assembly or any other regulation framed for this purpose. The Social Welfare department should examine the legal documents and registration certificate of the de-addiction centres or rehabilitation centres. ‘No objection certificate’ may be provided only after required documents and registration certificate are duly examined.
It also stated that infrastructure and manpower of the centres should be taken into consideration in order to accommodate inmates comfortably. Physical and mental torture or any form of human rights should not be allowed under any circumstances.
Any referral from police, local clubs, Meira Paibis etc other than the parents or guardians of the drug users shall be produced before an executive magistrate or police officer not below the rank of deputy superintendent of police, and free, prior and informed consent of the patient or drug users shall be obtained before his or her admission. If the patient is minor, then his or her parents or guardians should give free, prior and informed consent to any de-addiction centres, it added.