To, Naveen Patnaik

Chief Minister of Odisha, Bhubaneswar

Sub : Request to withdraw the decision of stamping on hand of returnees before entering the state border

Honourable Sir;

We are happy to know that the Government of Odisha haves finally taken steps to bring back the Oriya migrant workers, students and pilgrims who were stranded in various parts of the country during lockdown. At the same time, we are disturbed to learn from media reports that all these returnees would be stamped with indelible ink on their hands.  This procedure is purported to ensure that ‘all such persons are quarantined’.

The stamping on body of a normal human being or a patient is highly humiliating and discriminatory. This also encroaches upon one’s rights on his/her own body. This is against right to life and personal liberty as enshrined in the constitution (Article 21) and the rights of the patients as defined by the National Human Rights Commission.

It is believed that quarantine is the separation of people who are ‘suspected’ of having being exposed to the infection. In this communicable disease like Corona, for such ‘suspected’ people right to human dignity and privacy, mentioned in the ‘charter of Rights of Patients’ circulated and adopted by the National Human Rights Commission is important. The decision of the government of Odisha goes against such charter.

When sufficient databank of each individual has been made and when they would be dropped at Panchayat area and would be looked after by the Sarpanch then stamping on body with the argument of ‘identifying them easily’ can’t be acceptable. There is possibility at rural areas that they would be stigmatised and humiliated after quarantine is over.

We urge before the honourable government respecting the rights of all human being to stop stamping on body of the returnees.

Yours Sincerely

Biswapriya Kanungo, Advocate

Sharanya Nayak, Koraput, Odisha

Jayanta Jena, Sora, Balasore

Satya Barik, Bhawanipatna, Kalahandi

Sibaram, CPI(ML) Red Star

Rajendra Barik, TUCI

Sankar Sahu, Krantikari Krushak Sabha (AIKKS)

Kishore Bhoi, Odisha Nirman Shramik Union

Deba Ranjan, GASS, Odisha


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