By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL| July 14
The Supreme Court has directed that Manipur police personnel cannot be allowed in investigating the fake encounter cases. To maintain an independent investigation, the court has notified the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to form a Special Investigation Team comprising of 5 members within two weeks. The compliance report from the CBI is also sought after three weeks by the court.
The CBI director is directed to nominate the five officers and to go through the records of the 83 separate cases already available in the separate commissions, the High Court of Manipur/lower courts and the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). They are directed to lodge necessary FIRs, prepare charge sheets and complete the investigation by December,2017.
“The entire groundwork is already done by the commissions of inquiry or by a judicial inquiry, the Manipur High Court or by the NHRC, we leave it to the special investigating team to utilize the material already gathered, in accordance with law. We expect the state of Manipur to extend full co-operation and assistance to the SIT…and also the Union of India to complete the investigation at the earliest without any un-necessary hindrances or obstacles,” the court said. It felt that Manipur police, however, cannot be included in the investigating team as the charges of fake-encounter have been leveled against them.
It was suggested to the court that Manipur police may be associated with the SIT. However, such association was not felt appropriate by the court. “We do not think it appropriate to associate any officer of the Manipur police particularly since in some cases, the role of the Manipur police has been adversely commented upon,” the court ruled.
It cited the case of Bharati Tamang vs Union of India and others that to ensure that the criminal prosecution is carried on without any deficiency, we have no hesitation in directing the constitution of a SIT to investigate the cases.
The court noted that in none of the cases, an FIR has been registered against the Manipur police or any uniformed personnel of the armed forces of the Union.
“On the contrary, FIRs have been registered against the deceased for alleged violations of the law, under the circumstances it would be inappropriate for us to depend upon the Manipur police to carry out an impartial investigation more particularly when some of its own personnel are said to be involved in the fake encounters and the Manipur police has not registered any FIR at the insistence of the next of kin of the deceased,” the court observed.
Read more / Original news source: http://www.ifp.co.in/item/1889-state-police-barred-from-taking-part-in-cbi-probe