New Delhi: Maintaining that some "innocent triabls" were killed during the anti-Naxal operation in Chhattisgarh last month, Union Minister V Kishore Chandra Deo on Thursday said the judicial inquiry will be able to clarify whether the encounter was "fake or not".
Talking to reporters here, Deo, Tribal Affairs Minister, also said measures will be taken to ensure that such incidents are not repeated.
"The state government has ordered a judicial inquiry and things will be clear after its report. Whether it`s fake or not I cannot say sitting from here... Whether it is an encounter or not will be clear after the inquiry only," he said.
The Minister was replying to questions whether the anti-Naxal operation carried out by the CRPF, in which 19 people were killed, was a fake encounter as alleged by various rights groups.
"I had only said that some innocent people were killed... I have already said that some minors were also killed there," he added.
Asked about the differences in the statements made by him and Home Minister P Chidambaram over the issues, Deo said "it`s not at all a different take. He said something based on the information he had, I said something based on the inputs I got."
On whether he would like the judicial inquiry to fix accountability against the people who ordered the operation, he said "I do not want to preempt the findings of the judicial inquiry. The report of the inquiry will be based on facts and grassroot reality.
"It was an incident which nobody wants to take place again. Whatever is required to ensure that it does not happen again, we will think over it," he said.
19 people, including some teenagers, were killed in a fierce gunfight in the dense jungles of Dantewada on June 27-28 in a joint anti-Naxal operation by the CRPF and state police.