GUWAHATI, Nov 5 � The Gauhati High Court has directed the State Government to enact a special Act to deal with the menace of witch-hunting at the earliest.
The direction came after State Home Secretary GD Tripathi today appeared in person before the division bench comprising Chief Justice (acting) K Shreedhar Rao and Justice Ujjal Bhuyan in connection with witch-hunting cases reported in Assam (PIL number 98/2013).
The Court suggested to the Home Secretary to at least make the offences committed against the victims of witch-hunting cognizable and special offences along with applying other provisions of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
Chief Justice Rao also made it clear that the steps taken by the State Government till date would not prevent the killings in the name of witch-hunting.
Further, the Court also stated that provisions should be made to make the police aware of witch-hunting and arrest all witch doctors. Those who incite such offences should be held and tried for abetment.
The Home Secretary informed the Court that a specific legislation would be brought up shortly to which the Court retorted, stating that in case of technical difficulties, an ordinance can be made and later on, an Act can be brought in to tackle the menace of witch-hunting.
The Home Secretary assured the Court that the killings in the name of witch-hunting would be included in the proposed new legislation, Assam Organised Crime Act, which will come into effect shortly.