SC: UP en­coun­ters se­ri­ous is­sue, needs de­tailed hear­ing

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - TIMES NATION - @times­group.com

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Mon­day said en­counter killings of al­leged crim­i­nals in Ut­tar Pradesh was a “se­ri­ous is­sue” re­quir­ing de­tailed hear­ing even though the Yogi Adityanath gov­ern­ment claimed it had fol­lowed the pro­ce­dure laid down by the SC while prob­ing each case of death.

A bench of CJI Ran­jan Go­goi and Jus­tices Ashok Bhushan and S K Kaul told pe­ti­tioner PUCL’s coun­sel San­jay Parikh and UP gov­ern­ment’s coun­sel Mukul Ro­hatgi that it had de­cided on a de­tailed hear­ing af­ter go­ing through the PIL and the re­sponse filed by the state gov­ern­ment. The bench posted the mat­ter for fur­ther hear­ing on Fe­bru­ary 12.

PUCL had brought to the court’s no­tice “in­ci­dents of mas­sive ad­min­is­tra­tive liq­ui­da­tions tak­ing place in UP in bla­tant vi­o­la­tion of rule of law, le­gal and con­sti­tu­tional pro­tec­tion avail­able to cit­i­zens, in­clud­ing right to life.”

The pe­ti­tion said, “Facts re­veal that over 1,100 en­coun­ters have taken place in the past year, wherein 49 per­sons were killed and 370 in­jured. Ac­cord­ing to the fig­ures given by UP to the Na­tional Hu­man Rights Com­mis­sion, in these en­coun­ters, 45 per­sons died be­tween Jan­uary 1, 2017, and March 31, 2018.”

The UP gov­ern­ment had told the SC that 30 of 48 sus­pected crim­i­nals killed in the last one year be­longed to ma­jor­ity com­mu­nity and ac­cused the pe­ti­tion­ers of try­ing to give com­mu­nal colour to the en­coun­ters. It had said that in each of these in­ci­dents, it had fol­lowed the pro­ce­dure set out by the SC .

“In­ves­ti­ga­tions in 28 cases have been com­pleted and fi­nal re­ports filed in 19 cases have been ac­cepted by courts. Fur­ther, mag­is­te­rial in­quiry has been com­pleted in 33 cases and po­lice ac­tion has been found law­ful,” the state said. “An at­tempt is be­ing made to present dread­ful crim­i­nals as vic­tims,”it added.

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