The killing of two persons on suspicion to be National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) militants during March last year in Chirang district of Assam was only a tip of an iceberg.
Statistics revealed that as many as 15 encounter cases were reported from different places in Assam during April last year to February this year.
Two bodo youths were killed in a joint operation by the Army, the Assam Police, the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and the Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) in Chirang district of Assam on March 30 last year.
Later, India’s human rights watchdog, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) also took suo moto cognizance of the incident.
Assam has achieved the dubious distinction of becoming number three in police encounter cases.
After Uttar Pradesh (37) and Chhattisgarh (34) Assam registered 15 police encounter cases from April last year to February this year.
However, in Assam, the number of such cases has decreased in comparison to the previous year.
In 2016-17 as many as 31 police encounter cases were registered in BJP ruled Assam. In 2015-16 as many as 43 cases of police encounter were registered where as in 2014-15 as many as 82 police encounter were registered in the State during the erstwhile Congress regime.
Interestingly, the NHRC has circulated guidelines to all the state governments as well as the union territories in dealing with cases of deaths occurring in police action emphasizing that all cases of deaths in police action in the states shall be reported to the NHRC by the Senior Superintendent of Police and Superintendent of Police of the district.
And this should be reported within 48 hours and subsequent report along with post-mortem report, inquest report and findings of the magisterial inquiry and inquiry by senior officers must be sent within three months.
“Prompt prosecution and disciplinary actions must be initiated against all delinquent officers found guilty in the magisterial inquiry and police investigation,” said Jamini Srivastava senior official in the NHRC.