Since 2001, and till February 2014, as many as 15,266 cases had been filed before the Maharashtra State Human Rights Commission (MSHRC), but the panel has been able to disposed of less than a thousand of them. As many as 14,285 cases are still pending; documents accessed under the Right to Information (RTI) have revealed. Constituted under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993, the MSHRC, headed by Justice B R Bannurmath, looks into the various cases of violation of human rights. Refusal of the police to file FIR, alleged action by the police, and denial of human rights of HIV/AIDS infected people, custodial deaths and other kinds of complaints are looked into by the commission. No fee or stamp paper is required to move the commission, and for many it is the last resort for justice.
According to documents furnished by the commission in reply to an application filed by The Indian Express, pendency at the MSHRC in 2001-02 was nil. Till February 2014, the highest numbers of complaints (7,208) were received in 2008-09, while the least number of 1,454 complaints were received in 2001-02. Since 2008, the number of complaints has gone down. The number of cases disposed of has taken a plunge from 2011-12, with the year 2012-13 and the period between April 1, 2013 and August 31, 2013, witnessing zero cases being settled. The highest number of complaints disposed of after report/hearing was in 2008-09 when 3,402 cases were solved. Relief was awarded in as many as 347 of them. The same year had seen 8,563 cases being disposed of in total, the highest in the given time period.