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Meghalaya HC directs govt to file an affidavit on custodial deaths

The court has listed the next hearing on November 14, 2022.

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Shillong: A Division Bench of the Meghalaya High Court has directed the state government to file a detailed affidavit on all other unlisted cases of custodial deaths.

“Since the state seeks some time to furnish details of all other cases of custodial death, whether in jail or in police custody, a detailed affidavit indicating the cause of death, post-mortem reports, and any report of inquiry should be filed within six weeks,” the bench comprising of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice H. S. Thangkhiew ordered.

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The Court observed that though an affidavit on the cases of custodial deaths was filed by the state government pursuant to the previous order of August 23, 2022, it was fairly submitted by the public prosecutor that there may have been some other cases of death in custody during the relevant period though the incidents may not have been in correctional homes or jails.

“There is also a case of one of the inmates in a correctional home dying due to covid. The State will indicate whether the usual compensation payable in respect of covid death has been extended to the next of kin of the deceased in such case,” the Court asked.

“Copies of the State’s affidavit should be made available to all parties represented in the present proceedings including Dr Mozika, Amicus Curiae. Such exercise should be completed at least a week before the matter appears next seven weeks hence,” the order stated.

The court has listed the next hearing on November 14, 2022.

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