Bassi’s comments on hanging ‘disturbing’: Rights group

New Delhi, Jan 6 (IANS) Days after Delhi Police Commissioner B.S. Bassi said police would “shoot or hang” perpetrators of crimes against women on the spot if the law allowed it, a rights group on Wednesday termed the comment “disturbing”.

“…it is disturbing that the leadership of one of the largest police forces in the world appears to endorse tactics akin to extra-judicial killings that by-pass due process,” the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI), an international non-governmental organisation, said in a statement here.

“Innocence until proven guilty continues to be a cardinal legal principle of our law that clearly demarcates the functions of the police and judiciary,” it said.

“Nowhere is it the function of the police to judge and punish, but only to bring suspects fairly before the courts. The Delhi Police’s own motto ‘Shanti, Nyay and Seva’ meaning Peace, Justice and Service reminds the force of this duty.”

Bassi made the comments during the Delhi Police annual press conference on January 4, saying: “If the constitution permits shooting, if it permits hanging on the spot, Delhi Police will not refrain from doing so to people who indulge in heinous crimes against women. But we are committed to human rights.”

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