MASUM urges National Human Rights Commission for independent probe into alleged custodial death in Assam

Kirity Roy

Ex-SC judges could soon be appointed NHRC chiefs - The Hindu

Bangla Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM) has demanded an independent inquiry into the alleged death of a boy belonging to the Scheduled Tribe (Plains) community in the custody of the Borholla police and 244 Army Regiment of Charaideo district of Assam. In a memorandum to National Human Rights Commission, MASUM says the boy, who had been picked up by a joint team of the state police of Assam and associate the Army attached with 244 Army Regiment of Charaideo district during an anti-insurgency operation on the night of June 15, has died in custody. He breathed the last next day of his arrest. MASUM also alleged they tried to tamper with the evidence. Jayanta Bora’s family members were not informed when his health deteriorated and even after his death, they had not informed the family members.   It is alleged that the inquest was not done by any Judicial Magistrate which is mandatory under section 176 (1A) of the Code of Criminal Procedure stipulating a case related to custodial death, inquest should be done by a Judicial Magistrate. It is mandatory rule that at the time of the inquest, the family members, friends of the deceased are to be present. At the time post-mortem of the deceased, the family members were not informed and without any knowledge of the family members, post-mortem examination of the deceased was completed.  It is to be noted that on 23.01.2020 Supreme Court of India issued notice to the Centre and States on implementation of section 176 (1A) by human rights activist Subhas Chakma. But the present position is still same as previous. The matter is grave. The case is a violation of Article 21 of Indian Constitution, the international obligations stated in Article 6 (1) and 7 of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as the Goal number 8 and 16 of Sustainable Development Goal earmarked by United Nations and in both these international instruments, the government of India is a party and have an agreement. An urgent and independent judicial inquiry must be started into the incident. The erring police and Army personnel relating to this case who allegedly tried to hide the truth of the case must be booked under appropriate legal provisions and be tried in open court of law. The Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. 1989 to be added in Borholla Police Station case number 80/2020 under section 120B/302/34 of Indian Penal Code regarding the death of Jayanta Bora. This case should be investigated by investigation wing of NHRC. MASUM has also demanded that disciplinary action should be taken against those police officials who being known this case as a custodial death, not to inform any judicial magistrate, says MASUM Secretary Kirity Roy. (courtesy to The Hindu for the image)

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