There is an excellent piece by Rajesh Kasturirangan at India Together on the truth about encounters. While I agree with him substantially that in practice the line between genuine and fake encounters is often blurred, there is need for laying down certain guidelines which would merit calling an encounter as genuine. Those encounters failing such a test must be labelled as fake, and treated as murder. In my view, therefore, the Parliament attack case merits being called as a genuine encounter, when all terrorists were killed. 26/11 also would fall under this category. This is not to suggest that only televised encounters deserve to be labelled as genuine. The Supreme Court is currently hearing on guidelines for encounters, in the case of People's Union of Liberties v. State of Maharashtra. The responses of the States and the Centre to some of the proposals by the petitioner in this case merit attention.
For those readers, who would like to know more about this case, my article published in 2009 may be of use. Manoj Mitta has written this piece on July 31.