Guwahati: The Nagaland government on Friday set up a high-level committee to probe the public execution of a rape accused by the mob in the state’s Dimapur town even as a dawn-to dusk bandh called by Muslim United Students Association was observed in neighbouring Assam to protest against the incident.
The Nagaland Government has suspended Dimapur Deputy Commissioner (District Magistrate) Wezope Kenye, Superintendent of Police Meren Jamir and Dimapur Central Jail Superintendent B Chuba Phom in connection with lynching.
The decision to suspend the high-ranking officials was taken at a meeting of the State Cabinet on Friday. The meeting was chaired by Chief Minister T R Zeliang.
The Cabinet directed that the persons who had incited, instigated or encouraged the mob in breaking into the jail, taking out the accused from judicial custody and torturing him to death be arrested and prosecuted. The Cabinet appointed retired District and Sessions Judge Veprasa Nyekha to probe the incident. It directed all Deputy Commissioners and SPs in the state to urgently take steps to protect and look after the welfare of minority communities and to prevent any untoward incidents.
Zeliang earlier assured that action would be taken against the officials if the probe– into the death of rape accused Farid Khan,an Assam native, who was forcibly taken away by a violent mob from the Central Jail in Dimapur before being bludgeoned to death– found them guilty of inaction.
“A high-level committee has been formed to probe the incident. Action will be taken against officials if there were any lapses on their part,” he said.
The 12-hour general strike, though, passed peacefully with no untoward incidents reported. A youth, who was among four persons to have sustained injuries in Thursday’s police firing, succumbed to his injuries. A curfew was imposed in the town where shops and business establishments have remained closed since Wednesday.
Nagaland police chief L L Doungel said, “We are scouring footage of the incident to identify those who were involved.”
SSP, Dimapur, Meren Jamir said the police had been outnumbered by the the mob.”We tried our best to control the situation. We resorted to all minimum things like firing tear gas shells and blank shots, but we couldn’t rein them in. The mob was too big to be controlled. Not only students, passersby also joined in breaking into the jail,” he said.
Meanwhile, Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi condemned the incident. “The manner in which the youth was dragged out of police custody and killed brutally on the streets is highly condemnable,” Gogoi said. “The crime committed by the youth is equally condemnable. But he should have been tried as per law,” the Chief Minister said here.
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