Hyderabad encounter rape case nhrc probe

Hyderabad encounter rape case nhrc probe
Telangana policemen at the site of the encounter on the outskirts of Hyderabad, Friday. (Reuters)

A day after taking suo motu cognizance of the “encounter” in Hyderabad, where four accused in the rape-murder of a 27-year-old woman veterinarian were shot dead by Telangana Police, a six-member team of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) reached the city for a three-day visit on Saturday.

The human rights body had earlier asked its Director General (Investigation) to immediately send a team for a fact-finding and on-the-spot investigation into the matter and submit its report at the earliest.

The team, comprising two forensic experts, also visited the hospital where the bodies of the accused are kept. A detailed post-mortem was conducted Friday evening on the Supreme Court’s guidelines, the report of which is yet to be prepared. The forensic experts of the team also conducted a medical examination on all the bodies and interacted with the doctors and forensic experts of the hospital.

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The bodies of the accused have been preserved after a division bench of the Telangana High Court on Friday evening directed the state government to keep the bodies till Monday evening. The bench has also asked the government to handover the video recording of the postmortem examination to the Registrar General of the High Court by Saturday. The matter is posted before the bench presided over by the Chief Justice at 10.30 a.m on Monday.

The families of the accused were also present at the hospital but the NHRC team is likely to interact with them on Sunday.

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After spending nearly three hours at the hospital, the team then went to the spot where the “encounter” took place. They also inspected the place where the charred body the woman veterinarian was found.

In an official release, the Commission Friday evening had said that the incident indicated that “police personnel were not properly alert and prepared for any untoward activity by the accused on the spot, which resulted into death of all four.”

“The death of the four accused in the alleged encounter with the police personnel when they were in their custody, is a matter of concern for the Commission. The commission is aware that growing incidents of sexual assault and violence against women has created an atmosphere of fear and anger amongst the public at large but a loss of human lives even of a person arrested by the police under law, in such circumstances, would definitely give a wrong message to society,” the release said.

The Commission also said that there is a “lack of standard operating procedure to immediately respond to the panic situations” police.