Bhubaneswar, August 30, 2018: The Odisha Government has framed standard operating procedure (SOP) to prevent crime of honour killings and for effective investigation into honour killing cases.
On August 28, the State Home Department has issued the SOP to the Director General of Police (DGP), ADGPs, Collectors and SP, School and Mass Education, Panchayati Raj and Information and Public Relations Departments asking them to strictly follow the guidelines.
According to SOP, the SP of each district will identify sub-divisions/villages and ensure that the officer in-charge of the police station in these areas are extra cautions regarding any incidents of inter-caste and inter-religious marriages in their jurisdiction.
The SOP states, “Information about any proposed gathering of Khap Panchayats received by any police officer shall be immediately be shared with superior officers and SPs who shall take steps to prevent such gathering/meeting by interacting with the members concerned. He should also take measures to deploy adequate police force in the area and direct the officer in-charge of the area concerned to remain vigilant.”
“The event must be video shot in order to facilitate suitable action by the law enforcing machinery as per law,” it states.
As per the SOP, the IIC of the concerned police station where cases of honour killing happens shall forthwith lodge FIR and take prompt action under appropriate provisions of law under direct and personal supervision of DSP/SP/DCP leading investigation of the case to its logical end.
“In spite of the measures, if such a meeting takes place, a senior police officer in the rank of SP and DSP will remain present and see that no such decision is taken which may or is likely to cause any harm to the couple or members of their family. The report on this behalf shall be submitted by SP/DSP to the District, Sub-Divisional Magistrates for issuing order to take preventive steps under Section 144 and 151 CrPC,” it states
The SOP also states that trial of honour killing cases shall be undertaken by designated court/fast track court on day to day basis and shall be concluded preferably within six months from the date of taking cognizance of the offence.
“Departmental action will be taken against the concerned officers for deliberate negligence, misconduct and failure to observe the directions as per the service rules which will be finalised within a period not exceeding six months,” it states.
The Government’s SOP came after the Supreme Court on March 27 directed all the State Governments to frame SOP to deal with the honour killing cases while hearing a case filed by Shakti Vahini.