Editorial

Regrets by security forces after firing at civilians in Nagaland!

In Nagaland, where 14 civilians were killed in firing by security personnel, it is emerging that the Special Forces in that area were tipped off by the intelligence agencies about the movement of some terrorists of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN)-KY and United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA).

The security forces units had deployed different teams for surveillance and ambush after receiving the inputs about the movement of terrorists in the Tiru area of the Mon district of Nagaland.

The civilians travelling in the Bolero vehicle were fired upon by the troops after they crossed one of the ambush parties and reached the area of the second one, which fired at them.

In the initial firing, six civilians were killed as the troops fired for effect and that the initial confusion may have caused as the civilians were carrying a hunting rifle.

After the incident took place, the Special Forces troops were waiting for the police to arrive when 14 of them were surrounded by over 200 civilians protesting against the killings. The civilians were very angry and were carrying machetes.

A soldier was also attacked who lost his life, after which the Special Forces started firing in self-defence. This led to the death of seven to eight more civilians.

The injured included a number of civilians and army personnel present there.

Another person was killed and two others were injured in firing by security forces in Mon district when an angry mob attacked an Assam Rifles camp and the office of the Konyak Union.

The Nagaland area is under the 3 Corps which looks after the state along with the Assam Rifles.

The Special Forces unit involved in the incident is affiliated with the 3 Corps and is responsible for special operations in that area.

After the operation went wrong, the Indian Army issued a statement, saying the ‘incident and its aftermath is deeply regretted’.

‘The cause of the unfortunate loss of lives is being investigated by a Court of Inquiry at the highest level and appropriate action will be taken as per the course of law.”

The Army said the security forces have suffered severe injuries in the operation including one soldier who succumbed.