AiNNI confirms the NHRC’s Second Deferral by GANHRI and an NHRC to be led by a Women from June 2024 with no men as its member


This is in relation to the news that has been published as regards the second deferral of the NHRCl’s accreditation before the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI).  However, it is a fact that this news is not yet made public by the GANHRI Bureau on the recommendations of the Sub-Committee on Accreditation (SCA) of GANHRI which took place in the second part of the first session of 2024 from 25 – 29 March and 29 April – 3 May 2024.

You are all aware that this review of accreditation by GANHRI of our NHRC – India comes immediately after the previous deferral at its review in March 2023 where six recommendations were provided. There have been newspaper reports, articles, and OP-EDs on the second consecutive deferral of accreditation to the Indian NHRC following March 2023 in this recent session of the SCA meeting. We ourselves did not go public on the matter and wish now, to let everybody know that though the actual wording of the most recent SCA recommendations of May 2024 is not available yet we wanted to clarify that there cannot be an appeal against the decision for deferral by NHRC India to the GANHRI Bureau at all.    

The position of GANHRI according to Art 14 of its statutes is as follows:

“A decision of the SCA to defer an application for accreditation or re-accreditation is not a recommendation to the GANHRI Bureau and cannot be challenged under the provisions of Article 12.”
The statute of GANHRI under Article 14 thus categorically states that there can be no appeal by the NHRC against this recommendation for a second deferral. Therefore, the recommendation of the SCA, though not available for public view will it be made public by the GANHRI most probably in early June. We would like to confirm that this second deferral is irrevocable and would stand though we do not know the contents of the recommendations of the SCA of May 2024.

We are stating this publicly because we needed to clarify whether an appeal against the deferral was available or not and since there is no appeal possible against a deferral this decision is now final. Let us wait for the formal recommendation for the SCA to be made public for us to know the contents.
However, some important piece of news are the following:

(i)  That while it is historic that an NHRC from India has been handed over a second consecutive deferral under the leadership of Justice Arun Mishra while he has been serving as its Chairperson, it is also important to mention that this second deferral comes at a time when Justice Arun Mishra is also serving as a member of the Bureau of GANHRI;

(ii) Justice Arun Mishra and the Secretary General of NHRC Mr. Bharat Lal [ who is to also soon complete his tenure as the Secretary General] were in Geneva for GANHRI’s annual meeting earlier this month

(iii) It is more important to note that by the end of this month, the NHRC will be in a very special situation. Justice Arun Mishra, the present Chairperson’s last working day of the present tenure will be 31st March 2024, the same is the case of NHRC’s member Mr. Rajiv Jain IPS who earlier was a Director of the Intelligence Bureau (IB).

(iv) The NHRC will thus be safely left with a sole women member, Hon’ble Ms.  Vijaya Bharathi Sayani, appointed on 28 December 2023 and will thus assume the historic role of the Indian NHRC being led by a woman, who is not a judge, which has never happened in the 30 years of its history!

The citizens of this country while looking at the NHRC can have their last laugh of the poor mode of governance of the country’s NHRC by the government of today led by our Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi as well as the leadership of NHRC under Justice Arun Mishra which could not even get filled the existing two vacancies in the NHRC, each of which have been pending for the past 498 days and 978 days since Justice Mahesh Mittal Kumar (Former  Chief Justice of High Court of Jammu & Kashmir)  and Justice Prafulla Chandra Pant (Former Judge Supreme Court of India) demitted the office as NHRC members. Justice Arun Mishra now knows very well that being a judge of the Supreme Court [where none of his “malicious positionings” could be questioned by anyone] is much different from his position as the Chairperson of the NHRC. He should have at least known that before he successfully contested and got elected as a Member of the Bureau of GANHRI. He might have hosted the 28th Biannual Conference of the Asia Pacific Forum of NHRI’s in Delhi on the 20th and 21st September 2023 and provided a generous financial contribution of 3,23,770 US $ to the APF in the year 2022-2023 as compared to US$ 90,000 in the earlier year – but these alone cannot get you past the GANHRI accreditation. His leadership has brought shame to our country. though during his tenure only, the President of India, the Vice President of India, the Prime Minister, the Home Minister, the Speaker and such others were invited to address the NHRC Foundation Day and the Human Rights Day.

Let us resolve that we fight for a stronger, independent, pluralistic, credible, accessible and effective NHRC which addresses all human rights of all our peoples.  

The victory of AiNNI is the victory of the larger civil society in this process of accreditation of the NHRC that has been deferred for the third time since 2016 and twice in a succession since 2023 all under Mr. Narendra Modi.      

The All India Network of NGOs and Individuals Working with National and State Human Rights Institutions (AiNNI) will formally address NHRC Chairperson Mr. Arun Misha, his outgoing member Mr. Rajiv Jain and the government on their last day in the NHRC.

Henri Tiphagne
National Working Secretary,
All India Network of NGOs and Individuals
Working with National & State Human Rights Institutions (AiNNI)


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