A plea was moved in the Supreme Court on Thursday seeking that the then district collector of Tuticorin, its superintendent of police (SP) and other senior police officials be booked for the alleged atrocities against protesters during Tuesday’s agitation demanding the closure of the Vedanta group’s Sterlite copper factory in the district.
The plea, filed by Supreme Court lawyer GS Mani, contended that the police firing, which has led to thirteen deaths so far, was pre-planned and committed by highly influential state police officers with the help of the then district collector and the respondent state.
Deeming it as a “clear case of murder”, the plea also sought directions to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to register a case against the SP, the collector and others under section 302 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and that the agency to submit a status report before the apex court.
The petition also sought a court-monitored probe into the firing claiming that “high level police officers and the district collector are involved in the crime and there is a chance of them influencing the investigation and tampering evidence”.
The plea also sought compensation of Rs 50 lakh for the families of those killed and Rs 25 lakh for those injured in Tuesday’s protests.
The petition also added that people are being denied of their basic rights as internet services in the district have been suspended.
Plea for NHRC visit filed in Delhi HC
Meanwhile, a public interest litigation (PIL) was moved in the Delhi high court on Thursday seeking directions to the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to physically visit the site of the protests and look into the killings.
The plea, filed by advocate Sabrish Subramanian, is likely to be heard on Friday.
According to the PIL, the petitioner had given a representation to the NHRC for visiting the site and looking into the police firing but the agency refused to consider it.
The plea added that despite taking suo moto cognizance of the matter, the human rights body simply requested the chief secretary and the Director General of Police (DGP) of Tamil Nadu to submit a report.
The firing took place at protests demanding the closure of a copper plant in the district.