A magisterial inquiry was ordered on Monday into the custodial death of Jayanta Bora (30) after being apprehended by a team of Indian Army and Assam Police personnel from Jorhat district on Sunday night.
According to the authorities, the Assamese youth, alleged to be a member of a militant outfit, was taken into custody following a search operation by an Army unit, led by an officer, and assisted by police.
The victim’s late father, Naik Hemu Bora, was a retired non-commissioned officer (NCO) of Indian Army.
“They came to our house around 12 midnight and asked if my son was engaged in any squabble. They checked his mobile. Nothing was recovered from him. We requested not to take him away at that hour, but they refused,” said Lila Borah, the deceased youth’s mother, who has lodged a police complaint. The autopsy was performed at the Jorhat Medical College Hospital (JMCH) and a report is awaited.
“The incident happened on June 14 when Army personnel of 244 Field Regiment based in Charaideo came with a requisition informing about the presence of an ULFA/NSCN-IM member in Borholla village and requested a police representative to conduct a search operation.
“During the operation in the Kokodonga area, the Army apprehended the suspected cadre and brought him to Borholla police station in their vehicle. On reaching the police station, the Army team reported that the person was feeling uneasy,” said Jorhat Deputy Commissioner Roshni Aparanji Korati.
“He was immediately rushed to Borholla Community Health Centre, and after preliminary treatment, he was referred to the JMCH where he was declared brought dead,” Korati added.
Till the filing of this report, the family members of the deceased refused to accept the body and demanded action against the guilty.
The district administration and police are trying without success to persuade the family members and locals to accept the body and conduct the final rites.
“Trying to convince the locals is the biggest thing. Investigation is underway and a magisterial-level inquiry will start on Tuesday and a report will be submitted within 10 days,” said Jorhat Superintendent of Police Mrinal Talukdar.
The locals raised voices against both police and Indian Army as they gathered outside the Borholla police station. Additional Director General of Police (Law & Order) GP Singh visited the area, met the protesters and assured justice.
“We want to know under what charges was he apprehended, and whoever is involved in this incident should come here and explain how he died. ADGP GP Singh assured us that the culprits would be brought to justice in 24 hours. We want stringent action,” said a local.
The Army has not issued any official statement yet regarding the incident.
(With inputs from Gautam Borah)