The Bill amends the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993.
New Delhi: Rajya Sabha on Monday unanimously passed the Protection of Human Rights (Amendment) Bill, 2019 after the Union Home Minister Amit Shah reassured opposition members and said that they should not doubt the intentions of the government.
With this, the Bill gets a nod of the Parliament as it has already been passed by the Lok Sabha last week.
The Bill amends the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993. Under the present Act, the chairperson of the NHRC is a person who has been a Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. The Bill amends this to provide that a person who has been Chief Justice of the Supreme Court or a Judge of the Supreme Court will be the chairperson of the NHRC.
Similarly, a former high court judge can also become a state human rights commission chairperson besides a high court chief, according to the Bill.
The amendment provides for a reduction in the tenure of chairpersons of national and state human rights bodies to three years from the current five years.
"We have no bad intentions. The Chairperson will be appointed by a committee comprising of the Prime Minister, Lok Sabha Speaker, Home Minister, Deputy Chairman of Lok Sabha and leaders of the largest opposition parties in both houses," he said.
"Members should have faith in the wisdom of the committee," he said adding that there is no reason for any doubt by the opposition.