The Meghalaya High Court on Thursday directed the inspector general of prisons to file an affidavit indicating the complete list of persons who have died in custody since 2012.

Hearing a PIL on the issue, a Bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice H.S. Thangkhiew said that it will be counter verified by the state chief secretary to the state and that it will be best if a particular cut-off date is indicated.

Both affidavits should be filed within the next ten days, the Court directed.

"The affidavit should also confirm that there has been no custodial death other than those indicated so that if any anomaly is found or any further name is discovered, appropriate action may be taken against the inspector general," the Bench said in its order.

Pursuant to an order dated March 31, 2022, an executive summary of a more detailed report filed earlier has been submitted and the particulars of the persons who have died in custody from 2012 have been indicated in tabular form.

The Court, however, said that there appears to be no death in custody in 2012. "While that is possible, the state should again confirm the same," the Bench said.

It was pointed out by the amicus curiae that several names indicated in the table furnished by the state do not figure in the earlier reports.

The Court said that it is necessary that heirs of such persons whose names have been disclosed as those who died in custody for the first time on Thursday should be impleaded as parties.

The state should furnish the particulars of such heirs so that they may be impleaded in the present proceedings and the rightful persons get the compensation when it is decided upon, the Court directed.

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