Encounter killings: Share Justice Bedi’s report with all parties,says SChttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/ahmedabad/encounter-killings-share-justice-bedis-report-with-all-parties-says-sc/

Encounter killings: Share Justice Bedi’s report with all parties,says SC

The Supreme Court Friday said that five reports of a panel headed by its former judge Justice H S Bedi

The Supreme Court Friday said that five reports of a panel headed by its former judge Justice H S Bedi,which looked into 22 alleged fake encounter killings in Gujarat between 2002 and 2006,be supplied to the parties involved in the matter.

A bench of Chief Justice P Sathasivam and justice Gogoi asked the apex court registry to supply the reports within a week to the parties concerned and posted the case for final hearing from August 14.

On March 2,2012,the apex court had appointed its retired judge,Justice H S Bedi,as the chairman of the monitoring authority looking into the cases of alleged fake encounter killings during the four-year period in Gujarat,purportedly showing a pattern that people from the minority community were targeted as terrorists.

The court had brushed aside the allegation of the Gujarat government that it was “selectively” targeted on human rights issue and the same yardstick was not applied in dealing with cases of alleged encounter killings in other states.

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“You bring human rights violations from other states. You will find we will respond with same alacrity,” a bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam had said while appointing Justice Bedi as chairman of the monitoring authority.

Later,the state government filed a petition in the apex court to bring into its ambit the encounter killings in all states and the plea is pending before another bench.

Since taking over the task,Justice Bedi filed five reports in sealed cover before the apex court,which had wanted the supervision and monitoring of the investigation to be done by “someone whose integrity is completely beyond any question”.

The bench headed by Justice Aftab Alam (since retired) had rejected the Gujarat government’s plea seeking time to sort out the issue of appointment of chairman.

The apex court had expressed displeasure that after another former apex court judge,justice M B Shah,quit as chairman of the monitoring authority,the Gujarat government appointed former Bombay High Court Chief Justice K R Vayas to the post without consultations with it.

Before Justice Bedi’s appointment,the apex court had on January 25,2012,asked the monitoring authority to place before it a preliminary report within three months on the killings in alleged fake encounters.

The bench had passed the order on the two PILs filed by veteran journalist B G Verghese and poet and lyricist Javed Akhtar,who had sought a direction for a probe by an independent agency or the CBI so that the “truth may come out”.

Verghese had said the pattern of killings showed there was a need for investigation and had sought a direction to the Centre and the Gujarat government to order an inquiry into the encounter killings and compensation to the next of kin.

Akhtar,in his petition,had cited news reports and a sting operation done by a news magazine into the killing of an alleged criminal Sameer Khan in October 2002.

The bench,in its order,had noted his allegations that it was a fake encounter and that there was an attempt for its “cover-up” by the Gujarat government.