Insight Online News
New Delhi, Jan 12 : Army Chief General MM Naravane on Wednesday said report of the inquiry in the incident in Nagaland’s Oting, in which 14 civilians were killed, will come soon, adding that the ‘law of the land’ will be supreme, and Army remains committed to protecting civilians.
“The regrettable incident of December 4 during operations in Nagaland is being thoroughly investigated. We remain committed to the security of our countrymen, even in the conduct of operations,” the Army Chief said.
“We have SOPs that encapsulate our operational experience, which have stood the test of time. Appropriate action will be taken and corrective measures instituted to further refine our SOPs, based on the outcome of the investigation,” he said.
He also said the report of an inquiry in the incident set by the Eastern Command will come soon, and Army is also cooperating with the probe ordered by the state government.
“In the aftermath of the incident (in Oting, Nagaland) Eastern Command was quick in ordering an inquiry, it is in its final stages. Findings will come in a day or two. An SIT has also been constituted and we have been cooperating fully with the SIT. I would clarify that the law of land is paramount. We will always uphold that,” he said.
14 civilians were killed near Oting village in Mon district of Nagaland on December 4, after security forces fired on a truck carrying coal miners, and also at local villagers who came out in protest. A soldier was also killed as villagers attacked the convoy and set some vehicles on fire.
The Army Chief also said the overall security situation in the North Eastern states has improved.
“The overall security situation, in the North-Eastern Region remained under control. A robust security posture, has significantly curtailed the operational space for terrorists. There has been a graduated deinduction, of Army units, from areas where the security situation has improved,” he said.
General Naravane said the Indo-Myanmar Border, being an important facet of the security calculus, due impetus to border guarding is being given, by the Assam Rifles.
“We intend to progressively increase, the number of AR Battalions deployed for border guarding in times to come,” he said.