The Supreme Court on Thursday dismissed a plea seeking an independent inquiry against security forces in connection with the killing of Adivasis in Chhattisgarh in 2009, Live Law reported.
A bench comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar and JB Pardiwala also imposed an exemplary cost of Rs 5 lakh on the petitioner Himanshu Kumar.
Kumar had filed a Public Interest Litigation based on testimonies recorded by him in 2009 after the deaths of 17 Adivasis in different incidents in villages of Sukma district (then in Dantewada), according to The Indian Express.
In their testimonies, the villagers had accused security forces of killing two persons in the villages of Velpocha and Nalkathong along with nine persons in Gompad on October 1, 2009. Six others were killed in Gachanpalli on September 17 that year.
Kumar had said that family members of the deceased and other witnesses claimed that security forces had attacked the Adivasis with bayonets, shot them at close range and mutilated the bodies, The Indian Express reported. In his plea, he also alleged that security forces had chopped off the hands of a minor boy.
In April, the Centre had opposed his plea and filed an application seeking perjury proceedings against him. The court, however, declined to do so, according to Live Law.
The government had claimed that the killings mentioned in the petition were carried out by Maoists. It had also urged the court to direct any investigative agency to carry out a probe to identify the individuals and organisations involved in such litigations “to protect extremists”, The Indian Express reported.
“None of the petitioners have even remotely made any accusation against police or other security personnel,” the government had said.
Kumar, however, had said this was not the first time when he was branded as a Maoist supporter.
“It is interesting that all their accusations of me aiding and abetting Maoists are coming now,” Kumar added, according to The Indian Express. “While I was in the state [Chattisgarh], I was a member of the legal aid society and heading the consumer forum...Why was a case never registered against me then?”