IMPHAL, October 24: A public hearing under the banner “camp sitting” was conducted by the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) at Hotel Classic today.
The hearing was conducted in three sessions and the first full bench hearing was chaired by Justice KG Balakhrishan-Chairman NRHC, Satyabarta Pal, Justice Cyriac Joseph and SC Sinha.
Four cases was heard during the first full combined bench including those on lack of proper medical facilities at Churachandpur, death in an encounter of Senapati, ecological disturbances- Problems in the surrounding of Loktak Lake area and alleged fake encounter of one Sagolsem Anand Singh at Mayang Imphal.
During the second session the hearing was conducted separately in Division bench-I and Division bench-II.
The division bench-I was chaired by Justice Cyria Joseph and SC Sinha, wherein 22 cases of alleged fake encounters were heard. At the same time, 20 more fake encounter cases were also heard during the division bench-II chaired by KG Balakrishna and Satyabrata Pal.
During the first session, the commission asked to submit report of the progress of recommendation of CBI investigation in connection with Loktak Lake phumdi clearing scam (involving one K-Pro Company).
Surprisingly, the director LDA responded that he has no idea regarding the recommendation made by the commission. To this, the chief secretary responded that the recommendation was under active consideration with the law department.
At the same time, another case of CT scan scam which was recommended for handing over to CBI was kept pending.
As the sessions progressed, the commission members showed their resentment to the representatives of the state for none of them came prepared on the notices being served by the commission.
In most of the alleged fake encounter cases, the commission observed that the police lacked concrete evidence to substantiate their theory of encounter with militants.
In a particular case involving a joint team of police commandos and 12 MLI, wherein one Sagolsem Anand Meetei of Mayang Imphal was killed in an alleged encounter, the commission has directed the concerned police to examine more witnesses including the father of the deceased stating that the evidence made was hardly corroborates to the claims. It also asked for the submission of a report within 15 days.
Of the total cases, there were a handful of cases involving paramilitary forces but recommendation made by the commission to compensate the victim’s family was complied with. Sadly, most of the cases involving state police, were awaiting state cabinet approval.
In separate encounter cases where two individuals identified as Khangenbam Priyokumar and Sougrakpam Nehru, were killed by security forces, the commission directed the state to pay compensation of Rs five lakh each.
The directive was issued following the failure of the home department to submit a report in connection with the cases despite being granted extension for about a year. The commission expressed its frustration when more time was sought by the state.
The camp sitting was attended by top officials of state administration, top police officials and victim’s families.