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17 Jun 2017

Call to review reward policy - End promotion for encounters: Absu

Amguri PS under which the encounter took place on March 30. The three villages fall under it
Umanand Jaiswal, TT, Guwahati, June 16: The All Bodo Students Union (Absu) has urged the Centre to stop its "policy of promoting and awarding" security personnel for encounter deaths during counter-insurgency operations.
Absu president Pramod Boro made the request in reaction to media reports that the Union home ministry has asked its media adviser Ashok Prasad to probe the March 30 Chirang "fake" encounter case.
The case had come under scanner following the allegation by a CRPF inspector-general Rajnish Rai that the operation in which two suspected NDFB (Songbijit) cadres - Lucas Narzary, 30, and David Islary, 25 - were killed was "staged" and the weapons found on them were also "planted".
"We welcome the home ministry probe. It is a responsible act because it fuels hope for an end to staged encounters - and for justice. We welcome the mindset to not compromise on any wrong deed committed either by the government or terrorists. It's good for the country," Boro told The Telegraph.
He also said extra-judicial killings would stop only when the government reviews its policy of promoting and awarding security personnel for encounter deaths during counter-insurgency operations.
"The government should stop the policy of promotion for killings during operations. If it's stopped, fake encounters will stop. Awards should be given to those doing well in civil service, not for killings. Encounter deaths should not be considered for promotion. It is inhuman. Such policies only tempt people to get promotion by dishonest means. We request the Centre to stop such policies and the security forces to act firmly but legally," he said.
The Absu stand has a lot to with the loss of many lives in the BTAD owing to insurgency. Boro said it would bolster the efforts of human rights organisations to seek the withdrawal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from the Northeast. He said "encounter deaths" result in more killings. The act provides immunity to security personnel for their actions to maintain order in disturbed areas.
Boro said irrespective of the home ministry probe, Absu would move the National Human Rights Commission on June 29 to inquire into the Chirang case because there has been "gross violation" of human rights. "It's not only the deaths which have to be probed. The locals are deprived of basic human rights. Let the probes continue but we feel the NHRC is the appropriate authority to probe rights violations," he said.
Three probes are under way now, including the one by the home ministry, which will inquire into the allegation levelled by Rai. The ones by a magistrate and an inspector-general of police are "routine" ones ordered after every encounter.
Security sources said the encounter was genuine and Rai's allegation and the probes will only demoralise the forces risking their lives to ensure order. They said awards and promotions are incentives to keep the forces motivated and an acknowledgement of the risks they take. Boro had yesterday requested the Centre to "protect" whistleblowers and said if Rai was "wrong", he should have been "suspended, not transferred".

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