Centre issues advisory to states to check mob violence, lynching

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New Delhi, July 24 (IANS) The Central government on Tuesday asked states to appoint nodal officers of the rank of Superintendent of Police in each district to monitor social media content and conduct publicity and awareness campaigns to check incidences of mob violence and lynching.

The advisory issued by the Union Home Ministry asks states to constitute a special task force to procure intelligence reports about the people likely to commit such crimes or involved in spreading hate speeches, fake news and provocative statements.

It also seeks identification of places, within in three weeks, where instances of mob violence and lynching have occurred in past five years.

The advisory has been sent to the states and Union territories following a Supreme Court directive issued in this regard on July 17.

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One of the key directions in the advisory seeks nodal officers to hold regular meetings with local intelligence units in the districts to identify the existence of the tendencies of vigilantism, mob violence or lynching and take steps to prohibit it besides making efforts to eradicate a hostile environment against any community or caste.

This is second advisory on the issue within a month.

On Monday, the government had set up a high level committee chaired by Union Home Secretary to formulate appropriate measures to address the situation.

It also decided to constitute a Group of Ministers (GoM) headed by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh to consider the recommendations of the high level committee. The GoM will submit their recommendations to the Prime Minister.

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The advisory also says wide publicity and awareness campaigns should be done on radio and television and other media platforms.

All law enforcement and intelligence agencies shall monitor the social media platform and take action under Information Technology Act and other relevant laws, it says.

Police should register FIR against persons who disseminate irresponsible and explosive messages and videos having content which is likely to incite mob violence and lynching of any kind, as per the directives of the advisory.

It also asks state government to prepare compensation scheme for victims of lynching and mob violence.

–IANS

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