Meghalaya HC Directs Government To File Detailed Affidavit On Custodial Deaths; Within 6 Weeks

 

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A division bench of the Meghalaya High Court has directed the state government to file a thorough affidavit; indicating the cause of death, post-mortem outcomes and any inquiry report within six weeks.

“Since the State seeks some time to furnish details of all other cases of custodial deaths, whether in prison or in police custody, a thorough affidavit stating the cause of death, post-mortem results and any inquiry report should be filed within six weeks,” – stated the Division bench of the HC.

The Court noted that although the state has filed an affidavit, in accordance with the previous order of August 23, 2022, the Public Prosecutor has claimed that there may have been other instances of deaths in custody during the relevant period; even though the incidents might not have occurred in prisons or correctional facilities.

“There is also a case of one of the inmates in a correctional home dying due to Covid. The State will indicate whether the usual compensation payable in respect of Covid death has been extended to the next of kin of the deceased in such case. Copies of the State‚Äôs affidavit should be made available to all parties represented in the present proceedings including Dr Mozika, Amicus Curiae. Such exercise should be completed at least a week before the matter appears next seven weeks hence,” the Court stated.

The matter is listed on November 14, 2022.