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Sharmila gets Delhi court summons

- Fresh warrant issued for rights crusader

Imphal, July 17: A Delhi court today issued a fresh warrant to jail authorities of Manipur to produce hunger striker Irom Sharmila before it on October 30 and 31.

The court of metropolitan magistrate, Delhi, issued the warrant after the jail authorities of Manipur failed to produce her before the court at Patiala House today. The Delhi court is holding her trial in connection with her hunger strike at Jantar Mantar, demanding repeal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, in 2006. Parliament Street police station had registered a case against her.

Sharmila, who has been on a hunger strike since November 2000, was to be produced before the court today and tomorrow. But the jail authorities failed to produce her.

The jail authorities, through their counsel, in a letter to the court explained the reason for their inability to produce her. The letter said the jail authorities did not get the permission of the state government to take her to Delhi.

The letter further stated that Sharmila is in judicial custody as an undertrial prisoner in connection with another case in Manipur and is undergoing treatment at Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Science, Imphal.

The jail authorities sought sufficient time for taking approval of the state government and also to ensure proper healthcare for the hunger striker during her journey from Imphal to Delhi.

Sharmila has been charged with attempting to commit suicide under Section 309 of the IPC. The last time Sharmila appeared before the Delhi court was on May 28.

An Imphal court is also holding a similar trial on the same charge. Sharmila filed a revision petition in the court of the district and sessions judge, Manipur East, against a ruling of chief judicial magistrate, Imphal East, A. Noutuneshwari Devi, on June 4.

In her order, the judge said prima facie evidence of attempting to commit suicide was found against Sharmila.

“Hence the charge has been framed against the accused person (Sharmila) for committing the offence under Section 309 of the IPC,” the judge had said in her June 4 order.

The district and sessions judge, Manipur East, A. Guneshwar Sharma will hear the revision petition on July 31.

In another development, the Supreme Court could not take up the hearing on the petition filed by Extra-Judicial Execution Victim Families Association, Manipur, on July 14. The petition seeks setting up of a special investigation team to probe 1,528 cases of alleged extra-judicial killings in Manipur. The new date for the next hearing is yet to be fixed, the association said.