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UA 249/91 - India: extrajudicial executions: Baljit Singh, Daswant Singh Sauzi, Jaswant Singh Jassa, Harminder Singh Lida, Surjan Singh, Bachitar Singh, Kartar Singh, Tarsam Singh, Lakhwilder Singh, aged 15, Narinder Singh Nidra

, N° d'index: ASA 20/033/1991

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: ASA 20/33/91
Distr: UA/SC
UA 249/91 Extrajudicial Executions 19 July 1991
INDIA: Baljit Singh Bachitar Singh
Daswant Singh Sauzi Kartar Singh
Jaswant Singh Jassa Tarsam Singh
Harminder Singh Lida Lakhwilder Singh, aged 15
Surjan Singh Narinder Singh Nidra
On 13 July 1991, Indian police personnel reportedly killed 10 Sikhs near
Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh. Amnesty International is concerned that they may have
been victims of extrajudicial executions, deliberately killed without
provocation.
Police sources claim that the men were killed in three separate encounters
after they had been traced to forest hideouts near the border with Nepal: at
8pm and 11.30pm on 12 July, and 3am on 13 July 1991. However, the Times of
India on 18 July 1991 reportedly stated that the 10 men were taken from a bus
that had been hired to tour Sikh shrines in the area. Baljit Singh and Daswant
Singh Sauzi allegedly had links with an armed Sikh opposition group, but the
other eight (Jaswant Singh Jassa, Harminder Singh Lida, Surjan Singh, Bachitar
Singh, Kartar Singh, Tarsam Singh, Lakhwilder Singh - aged 15, and Narinder
Singh Nidra) reportedly had no such links and no criminal records. All 10 had
lived for several years in Pilibhit, which is over 200 miles east of the state
of Punjab.
The Times of India report claimed that the police stopped the bus on
12 July 1991, acting on information that militants were aboard. Three Sikh
youths fought with police, but were eventually overpowered. The women passengers
were released. Local villagers reported that the following morning the 10 men
were divided into three groups and taken in police jeeps to different parts
of a nearby forest, where they were shot dead. Among the police alleged to
have been involved were the Superintendent of Police and Additional
Superintendent of Police from Pilibhit police station.
Members of both the upper and lower houses of India's parliament have
demanded an inquiry, urging punishment of the police involved if official
wrong-doing is found to have occurred. It is not known whether an inquiry has
been ordered onto the incident.
Amnesty International regularly receives reports of human rights
violations committed against Sikhs in Punjab who are suspected of being members
or sympathizers of Sikh militant groups advocating a separate Sikh state,
"Khalistan".
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Telegrams/telexes and airmail letters:
- expressing concern at reports that the 10 Sikhs shot by police near Pilibhit
in Uttar Pradesh on 13 July 1991 were victims of extrajudicial execution,
deliberately killed without provocation;
- urging that there be a prompt and impartial inquiry into the incident; that
those selected to carry out the inquiry be selected for their impartiality;
that the methods and results of the inquiry be quickly made public; and that
if police officials are found responsible for extrajudicial executions, they
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be brought to justice;
- urging that immediate steps be taken to ensure that those potentially
implicated are removed from positions of control or power over complainants,
witnesses and their relatives as well as those conducting the inquiry;
- urging that the family of the victims be granted adequate compensation.
page 2 of UA 249/91...
APPEALS TO:
Mr Kaylan Singh
Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh
Office of the Chief Minister
Lucknow
Uttar Pradesh, India
Mr V. K. Jain
Director General of Police
Police Headquarters
Lucknow
Uttar Pradesh, India
COPIES TO:
Mr M. M. Jacob
Minister of State for Home Affairs
Ministry of Home Affairs
North Block
New Delhi 110 001, India
Telegrams: Home Affairs Minister Jacob,
New Delhi, India
Telexes: 31 61879 frgn in; 31 61880 frgn in
(via Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
and to diplomatic representatives of India in your country.
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 30 August 1991.

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