• SIT To Probe Nagaland Civilians Killing Incident In A Month, Says Amit Shah In Lok Sabha

    The current situation in Nagaland is tense but under control, said Union Home Minister Amit Shah

    Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Monday addressing the Lok Sabha on the Nagaland firing incident said that the probe into the incident will be done by the State Crime Police Station and a Special Investigating Team (SIT) has been formed. "I have directed the SIT to complete the probe in a month," he said.

    Shah said, "The current situation in Nagaland is tense but under control. The FIR has been registered and keeping the seriousness of the matter in mind, the probe is handed to the State Crime police station. An SIT team is formed and it has been directed to complete the probe within a month."

    "The government deeply regrets the incident and offers condolence to the members of the bereaved family. It was a case of mistaken identity and shouldn't have occurred. The SIT team will finish the probe in a month," he added.

    He also said that the Ministry of Home Affairs has sent an additional secretary-level officer to Nagaland to get a clear picture so that such mistakes are not repeated in the future.

    He further added, "It has been decided that all agencies should ensure that such unfortunate incidents do not take place again in the future while taking up such drives. The government is monitoring the incident minutely & necessary remedial measures are being taken to ensure peace in the area."

    Meanwhile, State Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio has asked the Centre to repeal the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA). He said that this Act has "blackened the image of our country."

    On late Saturday evening, a special unit of the Indian Army mistakenly opened fire at a pick-up van carrying coal miners from the Tiru area to their village in Oting about 15 km away, killing six villagers. Soon after, a village search party found their bodies and attacked the soldiers, leading to firing in which seven more civilians died. A soldier was also killed.

    On Sunday, another civilian was killed in Mon district which is dominated by the Konyak tribe when security forces tried to repeal a mob attack on an Assam Rifles camp. At least 20 people have been injured in the ambush and in the violence that followed.

    The Army on Sunday deeply regretted the civilian deaths and constituted a court of inquiry into the circumstances that led to the tragic outcome.

    The AFSPA is an act of the Parliament that gives power to the army and central forces deployed in "disturbed areas" to kill anyone after giving due warning if they feel they are acting in contravention of the law. The Act further provides that if "reasonable suspicion exists", the armed forces can also arrest a person without a warrant; enter or search premises without a warrant; and ban the possession of firearms.

    The AFSPA is effective in the whole of Nagaland, Assam, Manipur (excluding seven assembly constituencies of Imphal) and parts of Arunachal Pradesh. It was withdrawn from Meghalaya in 2018.
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