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Speedy trial of rebel cases

Jamshedpur, Oct. 3: East Singhbhum police today decided to bring cases involving Naxalites under the speedy trial cell in a bid to ensure conviction of rebels lodged at separate jails in the district.

“Once the undertrials charged in Naxalite cases are brought under the speedy trial cell, we hope there will be a drop in rebel activities in the district,” said senior superintendent of police Akhilesh Kumar Jha, adding that the administration intended to tighten the noose around undertrials facing Naxalite offences.

He pointed out that there were 81 pending cases involving Naxalites in East Singhbhum, adding that so far the conviction of those facing trial had been dismal as the prosecution witnesses rarely attended court hearings.

“The speedy trial cell will focus on each and every case. It will not only ensure that prosecution witness are summoned for deposing before court, but also pursue the cases with utmost support to the prosecution so that the undertrials do not get acquitted easily,” Jha said.

The district police have selected nodal officers in three stations at rural areas for ensuring effective performance of the cell.

At present, a majority of the Naxalite cases are reported at Ghatshila, Ghurabandha and Patamda police stations, the SSP added.

“We provide security to witnesses under the speedy trial cell in case anyone expresses fear of a backlash from the accused. We also organise meetings with public prosecutors and nodal officers before any trial proceedings in court. We will follow the same pattern while dealing with the Naxalite related cases,” he said.

The nodal officers are selected on the basis of their performance and sent to court for learning the nitty-gritty of contesting a case effectively during trial.

Jha revealed that the district police were currently dealing with 104 criminal cases registered with the 17 police stations across Jamshedpur under the cell.

He added that the cell was set up two years ago under an initiative of the district police. Twenty-six hardcore criminals were convicted last year, while so far this year 22 have been convicted. Those convicted include notorious criminals Akhilesh Singh, Amlesh Singh, Jitendra Singh and Hidayatullah Khan.