TODAY -
BT Road incident : The buck stops at an SI
Judicial probe ordered, six Cdos suspended
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, August 05 2009: In an apparent bid to defuse the present outrage, Chief Minister O Ibobi has today announced that six police commandos, including a Sub-Inspector, have been suspended and a Judicial Inquiry would be ordered to establish the facts and circumstances that led to the death of Ch Sanjit and Th Rabina in the BT Road incident on July 23 .



Chief Minister O Ibobi addressing the media


A formal order of the Judicial Inquiry is likely to be issued tomorrow.

Addressing a packed press conference at the CM's conference hall today, Ibobi dubbed the July 23 incident as unfortunate and added that the SPF Government has no intention to hide the facts.

"Justice is not a problem," said the Chief Minister.

Elaborating, the Chief Minister said that the State Government would approach the Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court and request for a sitting Judge of the High Court or a retired Judge to head the Judicial Inquiry.

To establish the truth, the Government had announced the institution of a Magisterial Inquiry, said the Chief Minister and added, "But since this did not satisfy the political parties, particularly the Opposition parties and various NGOs, following the publication of the photos by Tehelka, the decision to institute the Judicial Inquiry was taken".

The Chief Minister further said that six police commandos, including a Sub-Inspector, named Punshiba, have been placed under suspension.

"The report of the incident was conveyed to the SSP by the SI and the same was then relayed to the DGP who in turn briefed me," said the Chief Minister.

"The DGP briefed me on the incident, on the basis of the report given by the police commandos and I delivered the statement of the incident on the floor of the Assembly," said the Chief Minister.

"It was those police commandos, who gave the report to the SSP, who have been suspended," informed the Chief Minister.

To a question on whether this means that he has retracted the statement (the report of the police) made on the floor of the House on July 23, the Chief Minister replied, "Let the inquiry report be submitted.

The authenticity will be known after the report is submitted".

For good effect, the Chief Minister declared, "No one will be spared".

In his opening statement to the media, during the press conference, the Chief Minister said that Sanjit was an underground cadre at the time of his death and reiterated his status when a question was raised in this connection.

"According to reports, he was a PLA cadre.

He was arrested twice and was also detained under the National Security Act," claimed the Chief Minister.

Significantly, family members claim that he had severed all ties with the PLA at the time of his death and the police report, which the Chief Minister read out on the floor of the Assembly on July 23, did not specify the status of Sanjit at the time of his death, other than that he was arrested twice earlier and was booked under the NSA in 2007 .

To another question on whether he still sticks to his reported statement on the floor of the House that, "There is no alternative but to kill them (UGs)," the Chief Minister disowned the statement and claimed that it was wrongly reported.

Explaining Ibobi said, "I just said that there are too many underground groups and cited the example of the Mizo National Front, which was crushed" .

Fielding questions from the media, the Chief Minister said that there is no doubt over the genuineness of other encounters in the State and added that the State security forces have to engage the militants many times to ensure the rule of law.

"Killing each other will not serve any purpose," said the Chief Minister.

The Chief Minister further said that curfew will be lifted according to the situation.

He also brushed aside suggestions that the police were cracking down on the protestors, who were staging democratic protests.

The JAC formed in connection with the killing of Sanjit, on the other hand, while commending the Judicial Inquiry, maintained that it is now not the right time.

Moreover, they asserted that a Judicial Inquiry is not needed since Tehelka has come out with all the evidences and demanded that the police commandos be dismissed. Suspension will not do, they stressed.


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