SICHREM welcomes the step towards abolishing death penalty: Supreme Court has commuted Death sentence to life imprisonment for Bilavendran, Simon, Gananaprakash and Veerappan

January 23, 2014


Giving them their due – Facilitation centre for domestic workers inaugurated.

August 26, 2013


Want to make sure that your domestic help gets the benefits she or he is entitled to from the government and is aware of her rights from her employer?

The job has now been made simpler as the Stree Jagruti Samiti inaugurated a worker facilitation centre for domestic workers on Friday, which would maintain a database of the workers. After registering the workers, the centre would help the workers avail themselves of benefits from the government.

Speaking about the need for the centre, Geeta Menon, secretary of Stree Jagruti Samiti, said domestic workers had always been an invisible silent majority and there was a need for them to get recognition. “There is a need to identify them as workers and give them their identity. Maintaining a database will help us give them information on government schemes and benefits that they are entitled to.”

At the inauguration of the centre, the domestic workers were also given a booklet consisting of the number of various helplines, including those of police stations, Labour Department, Childline, Ambulance and Karnataka State Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

Mathew Philip, executive director of South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM), urged the workers not to hesitate to call the helplines for assistance.

Anushree, a domestic worker from Jakkasandra, said, “In times of emergency or need our employers turn a blind eye towards us. Although I have been working in three houses for 18 years, my employers refused to help me when I had a medical crisis. We hope that we can get some assistance from the helpline.”

Domestic workers could also approach the centre for assistance if they have any problems related to discrepancies in salary, false robbery cases and physical or domestic abuse.

The centre is located at 2643, 36 A cross, 28th Main Road, Jayanagar, 9th Block, Bangalore- 560069. For details, contact 080 – 22734956.


Source: The Hindu, Bangalore, 24th August 2013.

SICHREM flays amendment to police act

June 18, 2013

The South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) criticised the amendment to the Karnataka Police Act stating that it has restored the authority of the government over police transfers.

In a statement, the cell’s executive director Mathews Philip said the amendment takes away the Police Establishment Board’s powers to recommend transfers of officers above Additional SP and lets the government modify its decisions.

“With these amendments, the SICHREM feels that the government has accommodated itself with more powers and this will become its political weapon. The amendments are in direct confrontation and violation  of the directions laid down by the Supreme Court,” Philip said in the statement.

The Cell appreciated the Home Minister agreeing on reservation for SC, ST candidates while choosing members for the PEB.


Source : The New Indian Express, dated 17th June 2013.


‘Appoint Chairperson for Human Rights Panel’

June 11, 2013

South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM) has urged the government to strengthen the statutory human rights institutions in the State.

It also sought the appointment of a chairperson for the Karnataka State Human Rights Commission, a post which has been vacant since May 2012.


The SICHREM, in a letter to Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, highlighted 14 issues concerning human rights, seeking immediate action from the government.

SICHREM executive director Mathews Philip told presspersons on Friday that human rights mechanisms had been systematically weakened in the State over the past five years.

Although a Lokayukta was appointed recently, the institution should be given more powers, as suggested by the former Lokayukta N. Santosh Hegde, to effectively deal with the corruption cases.

SICHREM also sought effective enforcement of the Right To Education Act.


Source: The Hindu, 10th June 2013

B’lore: ‘Media Not Serious on Human Rights Violations’ – Human Rights Activist to Catholic Media Association

September 6, 2011

Thursday, November 19, 2009 3:04:32 PM (IST)

Report: Adolf Washington
Daijiworld Media Network – Bangalore (SP)

Bangalore, Nov 19: “There is an urgent need for the heads of educational institutions to include human rights education in their curriculum. Gross injustices being meted out to so many children often go unnoticed by the public. The media too does not do a serious job of reporting human rights violations. The issue dies down by just living as news for a day.  If the media takes serious interest in these issues, a lot of violations will stop,” said human rights activist, Mathews Philip, to the members of SIGNIS (The world Catholic Association for Communication) during their Karnataka chapter’s meet in the city on Sunay, Novemebr15.

Mathews Philip, executive director of SICHREM (South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring), urged Catholic journalists and media personnel, to take up the cause of human Rights violations through their various media organizations. SICHREM has been actively engaged in human rights education in over 300 schools across Karnataka and Kerala.

Secretary of SIGNIS (Karnataka), Fr Francis Guntapilly, who was responsible for starting a human rights cell at the Jesuit-run Indian Social Institute here, urged the gathering to “courageously publish any kind of human rights violations against any person, regardless of what religion one professes.  We have immense potential, given the media networks we possess,” he noted. He also appealed to the members to share whatever resources they possessed.

Later, during the day, members of SIGNIS  Karnataka re-elected its present president,  Fr Lawrence D’Silva and secretary,  Fr Francis Guntapilly. The body elected Nirmal Kumar from Bangalore as its vice-president in place of Sr Jacinta Prakashappa from the SMMI congregation.

Mangalore: SICHREM Calls for Implementation of Right to Education Act

September 5, 2011

Pics: Spoorthi Ullal
Daijiworld Media Network – Mangalore (PS/CN)

Mangalore, Aug 27: “Karnataka is one of the states which has failed to implement the Right to Education Act which was enacted in April 2009 with the objective of providing free and compulsory education to every child in society. Moreover, there is need for collective opposition to the cancellation of 25 percent reservation for poor students in private schools,” opined Philip Mathew, director, South India Cell for Human Rights Education and Monitoring (SICHREM).He was speaking at the awareness programme organized at SDM College hall on Friday August 26.

“Already 60 petitions are pending in the Supreme Court urging cancellation of such reservation. This is against the interest of society and children of poor people will be cheated of an education,” Mathew said and called for a people’s movement to create awareness on the issue.

“In a few ‘prestigious’ educational institutions only academically brilliant students are given admission which is again violation of the Right to Education Act. All these issues will be brought to the notice of the government,” he said.

In the debate session held with the audience, the parents grabbed attention by raising issues like punishment for acquiring less marks, upper floor class rooms allotted to LKG and UKG students, and a preference for English medium education among others.

Responding to the issues, Mathew said that complaints about these should be lodged with the local DDPI. During the discussion, people said that there is a need for the government to consider employing expert English teachers in government schools. Also, the government should not use school teachers for other government activities.

Human rights activist R Manohar was present.

Paper clippings of the meeting on Right to Education organized by National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) at Mangalore on 26th & 27th August 2011

August 30, 2011

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