A Central Reserve Police Force Inspector General serving in the North East on Wednesday claimed that two Bodo militants who were reported to have been killed in an encounter with security forces in Assam’s Chirang district on March 30 had been picked up earlier and shot in cold blood. The two men were suspected members of the National Democratic Fund of Bodoland (Songbijit).

In his report to CRPF headquarters in Delhi, Rajnish Rai, who is currently posted in Shillong, alleged that the Army and the police had staged the encounter in which the two men were killed. He claimed that the men were picked up from a house in D-Kalling village and killed in Simlaguri village, reported The Indian Express. The men who were killed were identified as Lucas Narzary alias N Langfa, and David Islary alias Dayud.

He has asked for an independent investigation into the matter.

According to the official version, the police had faced heavy fire from a group of four to five persons on March 30. They claimed they had managed to kill two suspected militants of the NDFB (S) and recovered weapons and ammunition from the bodies, reported NDTV.

However, as detailed in his 13-page report, Rai found many loopholes in the police’s version of the events of March 30. He claimed that the security forces had only recovered a Chinese-made grenade from them and that the other weapons found on them had been planted.

Rai also said he has witnesses, who are currently in his custody, who have identified the bodies as those of the two men who were picked up.

Rai called the killings “worse than insurgency/militancy” because they have the authority of the state behind them. According to The Indian Express, in his report, Rai said: “Security forces do not have the right to kill them (dastardliest of criminals/militants) in cold blood under the cloak of larger societal good. Therefore, it is crucial to strike a balance between individual human rights and societal interests while combating insurgency. Failure to do so is a cure worse than the disease.”

Recently, residents of a Meghalaya village had filed an FIR against Border Security Force officials who had shot at alleged cattle smugglers near the India-Bangladesh border.