The Supreme Court on Friday gave a week’s deadline to those states who have failed to file a compliance report on incidents of cow vigilantism and mob lynching as per its July 17 order. Only 11 states and seven union territories have submitted their report till now.
Directing all the states to comply with its directions on the case, the apex court said the home secretary of the defaulting state will have to appear in person if the report is not filed within the given timeframe.
The bench was hearing a plea by Congress leader Tehseen Poonawala, seeking initiation of contempt proceedings against Rajasthan officials, including the Chief Secretary and the police chief, for alleged violation of the apex court’s verdict in the alleged lynching of dairy farmer Rakbar Khan on July 20.
During the hearing, the central government informed the court that an empowered Group of Ministers has been set up to consider framing a law on mob violence following the top court’s verdict.
In its July 17 hearing, the top court had called for a special law to deal with incidents of lynching and vigilantism and directed that a slew of “preventive, remedial and punitive” measures be adopted to deal with such offences across the country.
The court directed state governments to designate a senior police officer, not below the rank of Superintendent of Police and assisted by a DSP, as nodal officer in each district to take steps to prevent mob violence and lynching. The two officers will in turn constitute a special task force to collect intelligence on those likely to commit such crimes or be involved in spreading hate speeches, provocative statements and fake news.
The states were given three-weeks time to identify places where instances of lynching and mob violence have been reported in the last five years. The Secretary, Home Department, of the states concerned, was asked to issue directions to nodal officers to ensure that the officer in-charge of police stations remain vigilant.