Two civilians were injured in Arunachal Pradesh’s Tirap district as members of the security forces opened fire after mistaking them for insurgents, authorities said on Friday.
Tirap District Commissioner Taro Mize told Scroll.in the incident happened due to a misunderstanding.
“Security forces have accepted their mistake,” Mize said. “Negotiations were done between both the parties at the house of the village chief.”
The incident took place at the Chasa village under Borduria Assembly constituency when the civilians were returning home. They have been admitted to the Assam Medical College in Dibrugarh and their health condition is stable, Mize said.
The district commissioner told Scroll.in that the security forces have given the injured civilians Rs 2 lakh each for their medical treatment and have also agreed to provide them employment.
“No legal proceedings like FIR [first information report] will be lodged as per mutually accepted decision,” he said.
Tirap is one of the three districts in Arunachal Pradesh besides Changlang and Longding where the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, or AFSPA, is in force, reported The New Indian Express.
The Act gives Army personnel in “disturbed areas” sweeping powers to search, arrest, and open fire if they deem it necessary for “the maintenance of public order”.
On Friday, the Centre had extended the Act till September 30 in the state. This came on the same day as AFSPA was removed from certain areas of Assam, Nagaland and Manipur.
This is also the second such incident in Arunachal Pradesh’s Tirap district in the last 15 days when a civilian was shot at by security forces.
On March 20, while the police had claimed that it had killed two members of the insurgent group National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isak-Muivah), Mize had said that one of the men killed was a civilian.
Inspector-General of Police (law and order) Chukhu Apa had told Scroll.in that one of the killed men was a cadre of the insurgent group and had suggested that the other could also be a member of the armed Naga group.
“Why was he moving with the armed group?” Apa had asked. “It will not be wrong to say that he was an overground worker of the group.”
Fourteen civilians were also killed by members of security forces in Nagaland’s Mon district on December 4. Of these, six were killed after the Army’s 21 Para Special Force had apparently mistaken the group of workers for insurgents.
Seven others were then killed after a crowd of protestors set fire to vehicles belonging to the Army, who opened fire on them.
The violence had then spilled over into the afternoon of December 5 after residents entered a camp of the Assam Rifles in the district headquarters of Mon. At least one more person was killed after security forces fired again at the protestors.