Mentally sick too have right to live

And right to live with full dignity being their human right, is what Supreme Court Judge Justice A. K. Sikri said recently while raising concern about rights of mentally sick. Unfortunately, in many parts of the country, there was a retrograde but entirely against established medical, legal and moral grounds to keep such sick persons chained due to ignorance, illiteracy and prejudice against this type of physical disorder. Chaining such patients was violating Article 21 of the Constitution of India.
In this connection, Justice Sikri cited an incident of an asylum in Utter Pradesh where many mentally ill patients were chained by saying, ” This is happening in 2019 where we are talking about the legal rights of the mentally ill persons, it is no more a health issue now. It is astonishing to find that various organisations who claim to champion the cause of human rights mainly on political connotations hardly ever get any time to look into the brazen and blatant human rights violation of the segments of our society suffering from mental disorders.
It is also surprising to note that this particular disease is not generally considered to be treated just like patients of other diseases and once that prejudice is gone; their rights too could easily be preserved to a larger extent. Is this country also not theirs and do they deserve not enjoy the right to live with dignity…. like issues were dealt with and spoken about by many speakers including Delhi Health Minister, Justice Sikri etc in a two day seminar organised at the India International Centre by the National Legal Services Authority , State Mental Health Authority , Indian Psychiatric Society and other agencies in New Delhi.