CBI director AK Verma arriving at the Supreme Court on Monday | Parveen Negi
NEW DELHI: Alok Kumar Verma, director of the Central Bureau of Investigation, on Monday had a tough time explaining to the Supreme Court the delay in completing the probe into alleged extrajudicial killings in Manipur.
The CBI is probing alleged extrajudicial killings and fake encounters by the Army, Assam Rifles and police in insurgency-hit Manipur.
During the hearing, the bench headed by Justice Madan B Lokur was not satisfied with the agency’s explanation that two charge sheets had been filed and five more will follow in August, and said, “The CBI filed FIRs against dead persons who are victims. This is unbelievable.”
The agency also told the court that by August 31, five more final reports would be filed in separate encounter cases from Manipur and that the probe in 20 more encounter cases will be completed by December-end.
The top court is hearing a petition seeking investigation into 1,528 cases, and had asked the CBI to file charge sheets in four cases that allegedly involved the Army and Assam Rifles. But with the agency failing to file the charge sheets by the due date, July 27, the CBI chief was asked to give an explanation.
“According to you, there are 14 murderers in these cases and they are loafing around Manipur freely? You haven’t arrested any of them?” the bench questioned Verma.The CBI chief responded, “The agency is going by the book and sticking to the lengthy procedure of filing charge sheet in such cases.”
The court ordered the provision of 12 more officers to assist the Special Investigation Team so that the process of filing charge sheets can be expedited. The court slated the hearing for August 20 and has asked the CBI chief to be present.