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Centre may order CoI
NEW DELHI, July 20(Agencies): Even as the BSF initiated an inquiry into the firing incident that left four civilians killed in Ramban district in Jammu & Kashmir on Thursday, the Centre may opt for upgrading the level of probe to a court of inquiry (CoI) after getting report of the preliminary findings.

A senior home ministry official said the ongoing inquiry — being conducted by special director-general of the force Dilip Trivedi — was kind of a preliminary inquiry. The paramilitary force would go for a CoI after getting the final report of the Thursday's incident from the special DG, he added.

The CoI under the BSF Act has provisions to pronounce strict action against culprits through proper court proceedings. The punishment under the Act may include jail terms, dismissal from service or demotion, depending on the nature of the guilt.

Though there is a provision of appeal in High Court under the Act, the CoI is considered an appropriate mechanism to punish a guilty of any misconduct. The CoI is generally conducted by senior officials from the rank of commandant and above, depending on the rank of personnel involved in an incident.

BSF and J&K Police maintain that they had to fire in self-defence when around 700-800 people assembled outside the paramilitary force's post and started stone-pelting indiscriminately.

The BSF has also denied the allegation of any mistreatment and desecration of the Holy Quran as claimed by the protestors. The force, in its report to the ministry, claimed that some of the locals — including a youth who was stopped for questioning — spun a yarn to inflame passions.

The BSF also alleged that the BSF constable who was injured in the incident got a bullet shot from the state police personnel. The constable is learnt to have sustained bullet injury while a local policeman was firing at protestors, it maintained.

An official here said that the state police would also take necessary action against its personnel if they are found to be guilty during inquiry. The state is conducting its own inquiry into the incident.

News Updated at : Sunday, July 21, 2013
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