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NHRC takes cognisance of Brahmin man wrongfully imprisoned for 20 years, demands action against the responsible officers

A Brahmin man, Vishnu, served in jail for 20 years on bogus charges of rape and provisions of the SC/ST Act before the Allahabad High Court acquitted him last month

After Allahabad High Court set aside the wrongful conviction of a Brahmin man, Vishnu Tiwari, booked under the allegation of rape and provisions of the SC/ST Act, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) of India has taken cognisance of the case, in which an innocent man spent 20 years in jail for no crime of his.

A notice has been issued by the NHRC to the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police, Uttar Pradesh seeking a detailed report on the matter. The report must also entail action initiated against the public servants responsible for the injustice to the man.

In addition, the report must also include measures taken for the relief and rehabilitation of the victim to compensate for the trauma, social stigma and mental pain he had endured during the years of his unjust imprisonment.

The NHRC has also mentioned in its report every person of the victim’s family had died while his duration of confinement. Despite exceptionally good conduct in the jail, his application for a furlough to attend his father’s cremation was rejected. He was also denied his brother’s cremation.

Allahabad High Court acquits Brahmin man who was in jail for 20 years on bogus rape charges

Last month, the Allahabad High Court acquitted the Brahmin man, Vishnu Tiwari, who was booked under the allegation of rape and provisions of the SC/ST Act. Tiwari had spent 20 years in jail on false charges of rape and provisions of the SC/ST Act. The Court’s acquittal was based on the medical examination report which said that no sperm or injuries were found on the prosecutrix, who was five months pregnant at the time. Her testimony also indicated that she was not a ‘stellar witness’.

The Court also expressed sadness over the ‘sorry state of affairs’ that contributed to the man’s two-decade imprisonment, observing the government’s failure to recommend his case for the remission of the sentence or to commute his sentence under sections 432-434 of the CrPC.

The Bench, comprising of Justices Dr Kaushal Jayendra Thaker and Gautam Chowdhary, observed, “Most unfortunate, aspect of this litigation is that the appeal was preferred through the jail. The matter remained as a defective matter for a period of 16 years and, therefore, we normally do not mention the defective appeal number, but we have mentioned the same. This defective conviction appeal was taken up as listing application was filed by the learned counsel appointed by Legal Services Authority on 6.12.2012 with a special mention that accused is in jail for 20 years.”

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