ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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POLITICAL PRISONERS-Killings in Guntur Second Interim Report of Civil Rights Committee

POLITICAL PRISONERS Killings in Guntur Second Interim Report of Civil Rights Committee IN April 1977 Jayaprakash Narayan appointed the Civil Rights Committee, with V M Tarkunde as its head, to investigate the deaths of citizens in so- called encounters in Andhra Pradesh. The first interim report of the committee was released on May 16, 1977 (see EPW, May 31, pp 827-29). It dealt with the murder of 10 citizens. The Committee has since collected evidence regarding nine more citizens who are reported to have been killed in 'encounters' in Guntur district. The evidence is summarised in the Annexure to the Committee's second interim report which was released on June 11. (The Annexure is reproduced below.) Once again the evidence collected by it leads the Committee to conclude that "no 'encounters' took place at all, that the killings were in cold blood. In brief, each of the nine citizens was murdered". A number of policemen of varying ranks were involved in the torture, killing and subsequent disposal of the bodies. The Committee has received direct evidence of brutal, "almost unspeakable'', torture. It has once again found that, as with the cases covered in its first interim report, no public inquest had been held as is required under section 174 of the Indian Penal Code.

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