The Delhi High court today sought response from the Centre on a plea seeking ‘martyr’ status for paramilitary and police personnel who sacrifice their lives in the line of duty, on par with army, navy and air force.
“Notice to respondents (the Centre, Department Of Personnel and Training and Ministry of Defence). Reply be filed within two weeks. List the matter for September 7,” the bench of Justices S Ravindra Bhat and Deepa Sharma said.
The notice was issued by the court after Additional Solicitor General Sanjay Jain, appearing for the Centre, submitted that the central government has no such scheme.
The petition, filed by advocate Abhishek Choudhary, has sought a direction to the Centre, Department Of Personnel and Training (DOPT) and Ministry of Defence (MOD) for granting equality to paramilitary and police forces on par with army, navy and air force in granting status of ‘martyr’ or ‘shaheed’ to the deceased personnel.
It pleaded for a direction to the respondents to grant equal financial compensation/benefits to paramilitary armed forces personnel at par with army, navy and air force.
The petition has also sought a direction to respondents to maintain proper records of members of paramilitary armed forces personnel who have sacrificed their lives till date and publish their names in an official gazette, notification or book.
It claimed that even after 31,895 sacrifices in the last 53 years on the line of duty, the honour of being called a ‘martyr’ still eluded the jawans and officers of paramilitary and police forces in the country.
“The personnel of the three armed forces of the country namely army, navy and air force are called ‘martyr’ or ‘shaheed’ when they are killed during duty, but unfortunately the men/women of police and paramilitary forces who are killed in anti-Naxal operations, rendering internal security duties and guarding our borders in extreme conditions are not given the stature of a martyr or ‘shaheed’,” it said.
The petition also claimed that the paramilitary and central forces have made numerous representation in this regard to the Home Minister and state governments for these personnel.