Jammu: Asserting that the Army had institutionalised the aspect of human rights even before the NHRC was established, a top Army Commander on Wednesday said the force has a policy of zero tolerance for human rights violations.

"The Army had institutionalised the aspect of human rights by setting up human rights cells at various levels in the force in March 1993," GOC-in-C, Northern Command, Lt Gen K T Parnaik said at a seminar at Akhnoor, 35 kms from here.

It, indeed, happened six months prior to the creation of National Human Rights Commission by the Government in October 1993 which is "an indication of the seriousness" the Army attaches to the issue, Lt Gen Parnaik said.

He said the Army has a huge responsibility on its shoulders to operate against inimical elements while keeping the tenets of human rights in mind. "The Army has a policy of zero tolerance for human rights and has tried to be as transparent as possible."

Lt Gen Parnaik said army operations have evolved over a period of time, and there is a change that has taken place in the force's thinking, operating procedures, and rules of engagement.

The seminar, Changing Concept of Human Rights In Present Environment, was attended by army officers, paramilitary force officers, IAS probationers and students of schools and colleges. The event was an effort on part of the Army to generate awareness among various sections about human rights issues.

(Agencies)