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'Probe into Batla encounter would demoralise police'

April 08, 2009 20:45 IST

The Delhi government on Wednesday pleaded before the Delhi high court that a magisterial inquiry into the Batla House encounter in which two suspected terrorists and a police inspector were killed would demoralise the police force.

"Magisterial inquiry in the case can have a demoralising impact on the police force and they would think twice before taking any decision while confronting terrorists in the country," advocate Mukta Gupta, appearing for the state government, said while justifying the Lieutenant Governor's decision of not allowing a probe into the shootout.

"If every bullet fired is going to invite a magisterial inquiry or murder case, the officers will avoid carrying weapons and a young man in the country will avoid joining police. If this message goes around in the criminals, total chaos is not far away," the police said in its reply.

The government contended before a bench headed by Chief Justice A P Shah that National Human Rights Commission's guidelines of holding inquiry into encounter death cases is not mandatory in law and it should be reviewed in view of growing number of terrorist attacks in the country.

"The rights of a terrorist who is responsible for spreading terrorism by causing hundreds of deaths of innocent persons cannot be compared with the rights of ordinary criminals," Deputy Commissioner of Police H M Meena said in the status report filed by him.

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