NHRC notice to Centre, Nagaland over civilian killings in security ops

New Delhi: The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) on Monday issued notice to the Defence Secretary, the Union Home Secretary, and the Chief Secretary, and Director General of Police of Nagaland, seeking a detailed report in the killings of civilians in an army operation, within six weeks.

The commission has taken suo motu cognisance on the killing of civilians during the security operation in Nagaland’s Mon district late on December 4. The incident had triggered several other incidents of arson, rioting and attack on soldiers and an Assam Rifles camp, resulting in more injuries and deaths, including that of one soldier.

Issuing the notice, the NHRC has also observed that it is incumbent upon the security forces ensuring proper precaution with a humane approach even if it involved the militants.

The report is expected to include the status of the inquiry being conducted by the Special Investigation Team (SIT), relief granted to the next of kin of the deceased, status of the medical treatment being provided to the injured, and the cases registered against the persons and officers responsible for the incident.

The Army on Sunday ‘deeply regretted’ the civilian deaths and instituted a court of inquiry into the circumstances that led to the tragic outcome of what was to be an operation targeting militants. “Action will be taken as per course of law,” the Nagaland-based 3 Corps said.

The Centre expresses deep regret over the unfortunate incident in Nagaland and also expresses deep sympathies to the bereaved families, Home Minister Amit Shah told the Lok Sabha on Monday.