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56 custodial deaths reported in Odisha during 2017-2018: ACHR report

New Delhi, June 27, 2018: The Asian Centre for Human Rights in its report “Torture update India” report stated that a total of 1,674 custodial deaths took place from April 1, 2017 to February 28, 2018. Out of it, as many as 56 custodial deaths were reported in Odisha during the period. 

Out of the total 1,674 deaths, 1,530 cases were reported in judicial custody and 144 deaths in police custody, respectively. The report was prepared as per the statistics placed by the Ministry of Home Affairs in the Rajya Sabha on March 14, 2018.

The report was released on Tuesday.

“This implies 1,674 deaths in 334 days (11 months) and over five custodial deaths per day on an average during 2017-2018. This constitutes a significant increase in the number of custodial deaths as a total of 14,231 custodial deaths i.e. about four custodial deaths per day on an average were reported during 2001 to 2010,” stated Asian Centre for Human Rights.

During 2017-2018, the highest number of custodial deaths took place in Uttar Pradesh (374) followed by Maharashtra (137), West Bengal (132), Punjab (128), Madhya Pradesh (113), Bihar (109), Rajasthan (89), Tamil Nadu (76), Gujarat (61), Odisha (56), Jharkhand (55), Chhattisgarh (54), Haryana (48), Delhi (47), Assam (37), Andhra Pradesh (35), Uttarakhand and Telangana (17 each), Karnataka (15), Himachal Pradesh (8), Arunachal Pradesh and Tripura (6 each), Jammu & Kashmir and Meghalaya (4 each), Mizoram (3), Manipur, Chandigarh, Sikkim and Nagaland (2 each).

On the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture 2018 being observed on Tuesday, ACHR stated that India must commit to ratify the UN Convention Against Torture (UNCAT) and place the Prevention of Torture Bill of 2017 as drafted by the Law Commission of India before the parliament during upcoming monsoon session to address the menace of torture in India.

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