An Apex Court bench headed by Chief Justice RM Lodha said the report of the probe will be sent to the magistrate and to the state Human Rights Commission or the National Human Rights Commission as the case may be.

 

The Supreme Court said that if an encounter leads to a death then FIR must be filed and a magisterial probe under Sec 176 of Criminal Procedure Code carried out. The probe be handled by the state CID or a separate police station.

 

The court has also directed that they will also have to surrender weapons and ammunition after the encounter. Further, unlike earlier when the encounter lead to awards, the court verdict also bars awarding of gallantry awards or promotion to policemen involved in encounters until the probe gets over.

 

The inquiry into the 'encounter', will be conducted by an officer who is senior to those involved in it. The court also said that information about the alleged accused or  his whereabouts by the informant will be recorded in writing or in electronic form.

 

It is worth mentioning that the SC was to decide on framing guidelines for the police on engaging criminals in encounters. It had also heard the parties on norms to be laid down for probing cases of encounter deaths.

 

One of the petitioners, the People's Union for Civil Liberties, has sought the setting up of an independent agency under the National Human rights Commission to probe complaints of encounter killings.

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