Hyderabad: An FIR has been registered for murder and abduction against Special Task Force policemen for killing 20 alleged red sander smugglers on April 7 in Chhittoor district, police told the Andhra Pradesh High Court on Wednesday.
The FIR was registered after a complaint was filed by one of the killer person's wife. The petitioner has also appealed for another post mortem of those killed. The court will take up the matter on Thursday.
In a major operation by the Andhra Pradesh Police, 20 alleged red sandalwood smugglers were killed in an encounter inside the forests near Tirupati in Chittoor district.
Police officials had said that a joint operation against the smugglers was launched with the help of forest officials in Seshachalam forest near Tirupati. The encounter started after the Red Sanders Anti-Smuggling Task Force (RSASTF) and forest officials spotted the alleged smugglers inside the forest area.
Andhra Pradesh Police officials said that about 100 red sandalwood smugglers were intercepted by the joint team. The smugglers attacked the RSASTF and forest officials with stones and axes following which the security agencies opened fire killing at least 20 smugglers
Several political parties have questioned the police action, saying labourers and not red sanders smugglers were killed by the Andra Pradesh STF.
Tamil Nadu government had announced Rs 3 lakh compensation for families of 20 people killed in Chittoor encounter.
Most of the victims come from different parts of Tamil Nadu including Tiruvanamalai, Vellore and Salem.