Assam: Probe ordered on the custodial death of Jayanta Bora

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Posted in Assam, Featured

NET News Desk

Following the death of one Jayanta Bora (30), who died in custody on Sunday, after being picked up by a joint team of Indian Army and Assam state police during a counter-insurgency operation in Jorhat, the district magistrate has ordered an enquiry into the matter. The state government has further stated that during such operations security forces have to be accompanied by village headmen or line head in the tea estates.

As per reports, the joint operation in search of the banned ULFA-Independent armed group and NSCN (Isak-Muivah) militants was carried out by 244 Field Regiment based in the Charaideo area at the district’s Kakodonga Habigaon under the jurisdiction of the Borholla police station.

Accordingly, the army and the police personnel of Borholla in Jorhat carried out the search operation based on information of the presence of ULFA-I and NSCN-IM cadres in the area.

During the search operations, the forces apprehended suspected cadre, Bora, from his house and brought him to Borholla Police Station.

Later, Bora complained of feeling uneasy and was admitted at the local health centre, however, he was referred to Jorhat Medical College and Hospital, JMCH where he was declared brought dead.

The incident triggered chaos in the village, where the people along with his family alleged that Bora was tortured in the police custody and refused to accept his body.

According to reports, Deputy commissioner Roshni Aparanji Korat told reporters that the Army team brought the man to the Borholla police station in their vehicle. “On reaching the police station, the Army team reported that the person was feeling uneasy. He was immediately rushed to Borholla Community Health Centre and after preliminary treatment, was referred to Jorhat Medical College and Hospital where he was declared brought dead.”

Reports further suggest that the Army has not issued an official statement on the matter while the district administration has called for an immediate inquiry and submit a report within ten days.

The state government convened a meeting of the Unified Command on Tuesday, to discuss the security measures in the state and the counter insurgency operations. The meeting was attended by the Army and the administrative officials. It was decided that the police or para military going on an operation will have to take the village headmen or the head of line in the tea estate along with them. They also have to ensure that the person has to be medically checked up before interrogation.

As quoted in the Hindustan Times, Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal has assured that the case will be tried in a fast track court and a sum of Rs 6 lakh and a government job will be provided to the kin of the deceased.

The incident has been condemned by various quarters. Former Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said, “I strongly condemn the brutal killing of an innocent tribal youth Jayanta Bora of Titabar Borhola in the custody of Army. A Judicial inquiry should be instituted to find out the truth and guilty should be punished. Adequate compensation to be paid to the next of kin.”

All Assam Students Union, Chief Advisor, Samujjal Bhattacharjya said, “The barbaric killing of Jayanta Bora of Borholla in Govt custody has sent a shockwave in a civilised society. Demand exemplary punishment for the accused and their trial should be held in a Fast Track Court.”

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