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Santosh Hegde Commission submits report on Manipur

extra judicial killings

A Supreme Court-appointed high-power commission, headed by the retired SC judge Santosh
Hegde, probing six cases of alleged extra-judicial killings in Manipur, has found in their report that
these were not genuine encounters and the victims did not have any criminal records. The report
makes it clear that the guidelines on encounters laid down by the SC in the Naga People’s
Movement case was not followed.
Manipur State government had argued that it is the duty of NHRC (National Human Rights Council)
to probe such issues and SC can come only after that but apex court cited the provisions of Article
21 coupled with 32 which provides the right to life and personal liberty and violation of this right,
according to SC, mandates it to intervene and find out the truth.
The commission includes the former Chief Election Commissioner, J.M. Lyngdoh, and the former
DGP, Karnataka, Ajay Kumar Singh, besides Mr Hegde and was appointed in Jan 2013 to hold the
enquiry into alleged fake encounter killings in Manipur after a PIL was filed by families. The
commission was also mandated to address the larger question of the role of the State police and the
security forces and make a report on their functioning and make recommendations for keeping the
police and security forces within the legal limits without compromising on the fight against
insurgency, If it was found that they violated legal bounds.

Read more:
Status Report of SC (Supreme Court) Proceedings on fake encounter cases in Manipur
14 May 2014

Mukul Sinha, counsel for fake encounter cases in Manipur, with his wifeat a press conference at

Monetary compensation relating to six cases of extrajudicial execution by police and security
forces in Manipur are not paid. The National Human Rights Commission has also been
informed by the Manipur Government that the Manipur cabinet has decided not to grant
compensation in some cases where it has recommended monetary compensation.

Monetary compensation as recommended by the National Human Rights Commission of India
(NHRC) in its camp sitting held at Imphal from 23 to 25 October 2013 relating to six cases of
extrajudicial execution committed by police and security forces in Manipur are not paid by the
Manipur Government. During the camp sitting, NHRC heard 46 cases including 43 cases of
extrajudicial execution perpetrated by both Manipur Police Commandos and Assam Rifles. It is
also to be noted that families of 3 victims who were summoned by Manipur Police were not
given any opportunity to testify before the Commission.

Mentioned may be made that in January 2013, the Supreme Court has appointed a 3 member
penal headed by Justice Santosh Hegde, a retired judge of Supreme Court to examine 6 cases
with 7 victims of extrajudicial execution following a Writ Petition (Criminal) Number 129 of
2012 filed by Extrajudicial Execution Victim families Association, Manipur (EEVFAM) to
investigate 1528 cases. EEVFAM is an organization of widows and mothers whose husband/son
were executed by the state security forces in what is general known as fake encounter.

Justice Santosh Hegde Commission established that the so call encounter as claimed by the
Manipur Police Commandos and Assam Rifles, which resulted in killing of 6 persons, were not
genuine and the victims did not have any criminal background. During the course of hearing, the
Court had asked an NHRC team to visit Manipur.

In 2 division benches camp sitting heard 46 cases which includes 3 cases which were examined
by Justice Santosh Hegde Commission, the NHRC recommended monetary compensation of a
sum of rupees 32 lakhs for violation of human rights in six cases of extrajudicial execution
committed by Manipur Police Commandos and Assam Rifles. The 3 (three) cases which were
examined by Justice Santosh Hegde Commission and the same were also heard in the camp

Question of Gallantry Award and Multiple Crimes

Major D Sreeram Kumar, who was implicated by Supreme Court appointed Commission headed
by Justice Santosh Hegde in connection to the killing of Nameirakpam Gobind Meitei and
Nameirakpam Nobo Meitei was also found involved in another murder case. It may be noted that
on 10 June 2009, Mr. Yengkhom Krishnadas, a local contractor was kidnapped for ransom. Mr.
Krishnadas dead body was found dump in an isolated area near Lilong under Thoubal District.
Manipur Police officials revealed Major D Sreeram Kumar’s name as an accomplice by five
accused persons in connection to the murder of Mr. Krishnadas.

Major D Sreeram Kumar is one of the only two serving Ashok Chakra awardees of the Army. He
was awarded the prestigious Ashok Chakra, the highest peace time gallantry of the country in
appreciation of his outstanding performance in combating militancy in Manipur on the occasion
of Independence Day celebration in 2010. It is reported that Major D Sreeram Kumar is
presently posted at Army War College, Mhow in Madhya Pradesh.

In another case, Jamander Hollal Haokip, a personnel of 8th Battalion of Manipur Rifles was one
among five persons who had been arrested along with a huge quantity of banned drugs on 27
November 2013. It is to be reported that Jamander Hollal Haokip was earlier attached at Thoubal
Police Commandos. During his tenure as Police Commando, he was found involved in more
than 5 (five) fake encounter case. Jamander Hollal Haokip was also implicated in two cases by
Supreme Court appointed Commission headed by Justice Santosh Hegde.

High Court

High Court under the Writ Jurisdiction entertained several cases of fake encounter in Manipur.
Upon the writ petition filed by the families and under such circumstances, the court directed its
lower courts, such as the court of District Judge and First Track Court, to cause an inquiry to
ascertain the facts and circumstances leading to the death. The court usually grants some
monetary compensation but extremely reluctant to issue necessary direction to initiate criminal
investigation notwithstanding prayers by the victim’s families.

In the argument of several writ petitions including a case of 12 years school boy namely Md.
Azad Khan whose case was the first case chosen to be investigated by Justice Hegde
Commission following the Writ Petition (Cril) No. 129 of 2012, full bench of Manipur High
Court stated that it was brought to its notice that one PIL being Writ Petition (Cril) No. 129 of
2012 involving somewhat similar point is subject matter of these bunch of writ petitions and its
final adjudication is pending before the Supreme Court of India.

The Manipur High Court further stated that a broad principle which is subject matter of these
bunch of writ petition is –what is the principal and measure of compensation if found payable
which should be adopted for determining the compensation in cases of establishing fake
encounter where one has died?

In view of this court the decision of the Supreme Court will have material on the issues arising in
these writ petitions therefore in the opinion of this High Court it will be just, proper and in the
interest of all parties concerned that hearing of this matter is deferred awaiting final
outcome/decision of the Supreme Court decision to be rendered in the aforesaid writ Petition

As of now there are as many as 30 numbers of writ petitions in connection to the killing in which
District Judges concluded that so encounter as claimed either by Police Commando or Central
Security Forces to be fake encounter are pending in the High Court awaiting the final
adjudication of the Writ Petition (Cril) No. 129 of 2012.