New Delhi: The Court of Inquiry into the traumatic firing incident that took place at Mon in Nagaland on December 4 last year has been completed, said the Indian Army’s Eastern Command chief as reported by news agency PTI. “It was a case of mistaken identity and error of judgment. The Army CoI is complete and it is being examined now. We also received the SIT report and both are being analysed,” General Officer Commanding-in-Chief of the Eastern Command, Lt Gen R P Kalita, said.
Action will be taken in case if there is any lapse irrespective of his rank, he said.
Lt Gen Kalita said Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act (AFSPA), which has been in force in the North-eastern state for a really long time, gives a functional help to the powers working in troublesome territories, however, the law was not absolute.
“There are SOPs (standard operating procedures) to be followed. At times, deviations have taken place. Whenever there is deviation, strict actions were taken against the defaulters. In this case also, action will be taken as per the Army Act and requisite laws of the land,” the Army Commander said.
There have been fights and requests for the withdrawal of the AFSPA from Nagaland for its supposed draconian provisions, following the killings by the Army workforce in Oting.
The AFSPA engages security powers to direct activities and capture anybody with next to no earlier warrant other than giving a prior warrant from capture and prosecution to the security forces if they shoot someone dead.
The Act was removed from 15 police headquarters regions in 7 areas in Nagaland with impact from April 1.
Notably, the Indian Army had ordered a high-level inquiry into the firing incident in Nagaland’s Mon on December 4 last year. The Army investigation team was led by a Major General-rank officer. A team of commandos of 21 Para Special Forces of the Indian Army killed 13 innocent civilians in an unsuccessful counter-terrorist operation in Mon, Nagaland.
Special forces commandos killed 13 innocent civilians of Nagaland mistaking them for terrorists. The next day, another civilian lost his life in Mon, when Assam Rifles personnel opened fire on a crowd of protesters who had entered the paramilitary unit’s base on Mon.
The Nagaland government had extended the five-part SIT to a 22-part test group and partitioned it into seven gatherings.
The Army’s Court of Inquiry was going by a Major General rank officer.
(With PTI inputs)