Govt orders high-level inquiry
SHILLONG: Taking cognizance of the alleged illegal confinement, kidnapping and torture of 12 girls in Tura, the state government has ordered a high-level inquiry into the incident even as Home Minister Roshan Warjri has sought a report from the Deputy Commissioner of West Garo Hills Pravin Bakshi on the matter.
The decision to probe the incident was taken after the Social Welfare Minister Deborah C. Marak held a meeting to discuss the issue.
The high-level inquiry committee will be headed by commissioner & secretary of Secretariat Administration Department (SAD) M.H.K. Marak.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Deborah Marak said that she wanted an impartial probe into the entire episode, adding the committee would be assisted by the district social welfare officer/joint district social welfare officer, Tura.
The committee would inquire into the allegations made in local newspapers and the circumstances there under; to inquire into the nature and extent of injuries of the victims and the medical support or assistance rendered to them; to examine the relevant documents, complaints and witnesses; and to suggest suitable remedial measures.
The inquiry committee would have to submit its report within a month.
Earlier, five self-styled activists were arrested in connection with illegal confinement, kidnapping and torture of the teenagers who were held captive for eight day by the ‘activists’ in the rented residence of Jaynie Ningring N. Sangma at Danakgre, in the outskirt of Tura town.
The inquiry will also probe if the activists had links with GNLA as one of the activists had allegedly warned the victims that they would ask GNLA militants to kill them if they tried to run away.
The teenagers were picked up from their residences on the pretext that they were into “illegal sex trade”.
According to Marak, the Government would take action as per law after the report was submitted before the Government and the victims would be given counselling.
Meanwhile, Home Minister said, “I have already sought a report from the deputy commissioner and moreover, a magisterial probe is on to ascertain the facts”.
The Meghalaya State Commission for Women has already demanded a thorough probe into the matter.
Police have registered cases under section 365 (kidnapping, abducting with intent secretly and wrongfully to confine a person), 387 (putting person in fear of death or of grievous hurt), 506 (criminal intimidation), 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint), 342 (punishment for wrongful confinement), 343 (wrongful confinement for three days, or more), 120-B (punishment for criminal conspiracy) and 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons).