Expressing satisfaction over the functioning of a Supreme Court-appointed Commission headed by Justice (Retd.) Santosh Hegde that concluded its inquiry into six of the alleged 1,528 cases of extra-judicial executions by the armed forces in Manipur, representatives of the victims and human rights bodies have expressed hope that the plight of hundreds of victims of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act would be heard and their grievances redressed.
“We are satisfied over the transparency with which the Commission comprising Justice N. Santosh Hegde, former Chief Election Commissioner J. M. Lyngdoh and retired Director-General of Karnataka Police Ajai Kumar Singh conducted an enquiry into the six cases involving killings of seven persons,” said Babloo Loitongbam of the Human Rights Alert (Manipur) at a press conference.
The Commission concluded its enquiry on Thursday and is expected to submit its report on the findings regarding functioning of the police and security forces in the State and recommendations on corrective measures within a week.
“It is a very significant development for the people of Manipur. The fate of the Committee, headed by Justice (Retd) B. P. Jeevan Reddy, on Review of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, which was submitted to the Government of India in June 2005 is not known. It has not yet been tabled before Parliament. However, we have high hopes from this Commission which has conducted a thorough inquiry into the cases…many hidden truths are coming out,” said Mr. Loitongbam.
It was in September 2012 that the Extrajudicial Execution Victim Families’ Association (EEVFAM)) along with HRA had submitted a list of 1,528 cases of killings in Manipur since 1979 before the Supreme Court seeking constitution of a Special Investigation Team to investigate the deaths.