The Supreme Court on Friday observed that Indian Army and paramilitary personnel cannot use “excessive and retaliatory force” in Manipur and other regions where the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act is enforced. The apex court was hearing a petition seeking an inquiry by a Special Investigation Team or the Central Bureau of Investigation into extrajudicial killings in the state, PTI reported.

“Use of excessive force and retaliatory force must be inquired into,” a bench led by Justice Madan B Lokur said, adding that all cases regarding such killings by security forces must be investigated. It also observed that a criminal court can be approached if prima facie, a case appears to be a fake encounter, The Indian Express reported. It sought details of 1,528 alleged fake encounters in Manipur.

While the court noted that the army can also conduct its own investigations into the accusations till a court examines the case, it assured the National Human Rights commission that it will look into granting the body more authority. The NHRC had complained that the Manipur government constantly disregarded its orders.