Guwahati: The Gauhati High Court on Thursday granted the counsel appearing for the Assam government one week’s time to file a rejoinder against the affidavit submitted in the court last Tuesday against alleged fake encounters by Assam Police since May last year.

The high court had taken up the public interest litigation (PIL) for hearing after the counsel for petitioner stated that the affidavit submitted by the state government on Tuesday “is not a detailed affidavit” as was directed to be filed by the court vide order dated January 11, 2022.

Advocate General Devajit Saikia, appearing for the state government, sought one week’s time to file the rejoinder against the affidavit filed on Tuesday which was granted by the Court. The court has fixed February 21 as the next date of hearing.

New Delhi-based advocate Arif Jwadder, who had filed the PIL (number 86/2021), mentioned that 80 such encounters have taken place in the state since May 2021, resulting in 28 deaths and leaving 48 injured.

Jwadder, who belongs to Assam, has sought an order from the high court for the registration of an FIR in the alleged fake encounter cases and an independent investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), a Special Investigation Team (SIT) or a police team from another state, under the supervision of the Court.

He has also sought a judicial inquiry by a sitting Judge of the Gauhati High Court into the alleged encounters and monetary compensation to the families of the victims after due verification.

Besides the state government, Assam Police, the department of law and justice, National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and the Assam Human Rights Commission (AHRC) have been named respondents in the petition.

In July last year, Jwadder had filed a complaint against such incidents with the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).

The Commission had sought a report from the Assam Police in September. 

In November, the NHRC transferred the case to the Assam Human Rights Commission.

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