On December 10, the Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission observed Human Rights Day 2023 in an inclusive environment. Reminding people about their rights and educating them about the same, the MSHRC carried out an event in Mumbai which was graced by the presence of Justice Swatanter Kumar, retired justice of the Supreme Court of India and former chief justice of the Bombay High Court and was attended by several law students.
Marking the 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Chief Guest Justice Swatanter Kumar remarked that the Indian law system is complimented globally. He reflected on the essence of the Constitution by quoting words from the Preamble of India on justice and equality and said that the people of the nation hold faith in the court and the judicial system.
Chief Guest Justice Swatanter Kumar on Human Right Day | Swarna
The panel of dignitaries consisted of Justice (Retd.) KK Tated, the Chairperson of MSHRC; DB Gawade IAS, Secretary of MSHRC; MA Sayeed, a member of the MSHRC; Senior Advocate Milind Sathe from the Bombay High Court, and Dr Asha Bajpai, a member of the National Legal Services Authority NALSA.
"Human Rights Day is a reminder to respect rights"
“Every year, the 10th of December is celebrated as Human Rights Day, serving as a reminder for all to respect the rights of every individual in society," said Chairperson, MSHRC. Along with reminding people and spreading awareness about human rights, MA Sayeed urged people to also follow the fundamental duties sincerely and noted that both the rights and duties of citizens go hand in hand. In his address, he remarked on the theme of Human Rights Day 2023 being "Freedom, Equality and Justice for All."
Dr Asha Bajpai recollected recent instances such as welcoming the Miti Cafe in the SC while adding a note on accessibility and inclusivity in society. She, later, shared her experiences of working with vulnerable segments of people such as children and women in prison, sex workers, and the elderly while focusing on the need to preserve and promote the human rights of all.
A look into the celebration
The celebration of Human Rights Day involved events such as the recitation of the National Anthem and the Maharashtra song by visually challenged children of the Kamla Mehta Dadar School of the Blind, followed by a short play performed by 17 boys from the Dongri Observation Home in Umerkhadi, Mumbai.
Students of Kamla Mehta Dadar School of the Blind | Swarna/FPJ
The acting performance was titled "Second Chance" and it threw light on the experiences the children in the home have gone through in their lives. It was a call asking whether society is ready to accept those kids and give them a second chance. "Can you change your perspective (towards us)? Give us a chance to change," resonated the message from the performance.
A glimpse from the short play | Swarna/FPJ
A glimpse from the short play - Second Chance | Swarna/FPJ
Dignitaries felicitated the girls who recited the National Anthem and the state song, followed by awarding the boys who performed the short play. Two Olympic winners from the Home For The Mentally Deficient Children, Mankurd were also awarded during the event along with students of the Nakoda Karna Badhir Vidhyalaya, Bhiwandi. The release of the souvenir 2023 by the MSHRC also took place.
Souvenir 2023 | Swarna/FPJ
Also, notably, a sign language interpreter was present on the stage during the entire course of the celebration. Two ISL teachers, namely Sapna Gosavi and Deepmala Mhasde, from the NKBV, Bhiwandi alternatively guided the special students attending the event.