Sammiuddin alleges he was falsely implicated by U.P. police

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe into the complaint of Amar Ujala reporter Sammiuddin alias Neelu that he was falsely implicated by the Lakhimpur Kheeri district police of Uttar Pradesh in a criminal case under the Wildlife Act and that the police were threatening that he would be bumped off in an encounter.

The CBI should also probe deep into the role of the then Superintendent of Police of the district and other policemen in the matter.

The NHRC took the decision as there were two contradicting reports of the State Crime Branch CID police, which investigated his compliant initially — first one stating that his complaint was genuine and the second one contradicting it. In fact the NHRC ordered payment of Rs.5 lakh to the journalist based on the CB-CID's first report, dated March 8, 2007 and the compensation order issued by NHRC on February 4, 2010 as he was victimised by the police for exercising his right to freedom of expression.

However, after the second report of the CB-CID, the U.P. government stopped the payment and thereafter a case was registered against the journalist. The government said that it did not find any justification in granting relief to him (Sammiuddin) as recommended by the NHRC.

The CB-CID's earlier report concluded that there were no independent witnesses except the police officers to state that Mr. Sammiuddin had in his possession contraband wildlife articles. The Departmental action was also taken against the errant police officials in the case for not procuring independent evidence.

Contradictory CB-CID reports

Now, after the second report of the CB-CID which contradicted its earlier report in the matter, the NHRC said that the matter had gone for a long time. “The protracted correspondence carried out with the State authorities and personal interaction with the Additional DG (Human Rights) on several occasions leads to one and only one escapable assumption that a concerted move is on to deny compensation to the victim — Sammiuddin — whose human rights have been violated by the UP State,” it said.

“It beats comprehension as to why a case registered and investigated by the CB-CID relating to animal skin and nails of tiger etc. allegedly recovered from the victim, culminated in the Final report (FR), but in the subsequent enquiry, the same agency, CB-CID, has changed its version and now trying to prove that the case was genuine one,” the Commission wondered and took a view that it was a case of alleged false implication by the police.

The reporter claimed that he was a respectable citizen and had no criminal history. He alleged that in the absence of independent evidence, the police had falsely implicated him.

The journalist made the complaint to the NHRC on July 13, 2006.

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