Police killed girl on fake claims: panel

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Police killed girl on fake claims panelAlmost four years after Meena Khalkho, a 16-year-old tribal girl from Kharcha village in Sarguja district of Chhattisgarh, was killed in an “encounter”, an inquiry commission has said that the police murdered her after falsely branding her as a “Maoist”.

The Anita Jha judicial inquiry commission report was placed before the State Cabinet on Tuesday.

“The commission has concluded that Meena Khalkho died of a bullet fired from a police weapon,” Chhattisgarh Panchayat and Rural Development Minister Ajay Chandrakar said. The government would ask the State Crime Investigation Department to investigate the case further.
Questions over killing

The commission has raised questions over the “reality” of the encounter and the police’s claim that Meena was a “Maoist”.

Meena was killed on July 6, 2011 in an alleged encounter near Navadih village of Sarguja. The police declared her a Maoist, and claimed to have recovered a rifle from her.

However, the people of Navadih denied that any encounter had taken place. Meena’s family members denied police claims that she was a “Maoist”.

The government had ordered an inquiry after Opposition Congress produced medical records in the Assembly alleging that the girl was “raped” and “murdered”.

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