Video Producer: Shohini Bose
Video Editor: Sandeep Suman
At least two people were reported dead and nine were reported to be injured in a violent clash broke out during the Assam government's eviction drive in the state's Darrang district on Thursday, 23 September.
In one of the videos of the incident being shared, police officers can be seen brutally thrashing a local with wooden sticks.
In the video, a lone local charges towards a band of policemen in riot gear. The policemen overpower him and continue to brutalise him even as he lays motionless on a ground.
Another man carrying a video camera is seen pouncing on the unconscious local and beating him. The cameraperson has now been arrested, ANI reported quoting GP Singh, Special DGP Law & Order.
Visuals of the incident also show armed police personnel firing on locals, with gunshots being heard in the distance.
'Locals Pelted Stones'
The Superintendent of Police of Darrang and brother of Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswas Sarma, Sushanta Biswa Sarma said in a statement on Thursday that the people pelted stones.
Sarma had earlier said that the anti-encroachment drive was stopped midway due to the rampage.
"We couldn't complete the eviction because of the situation. We will assess later. We are returning as of now," he told NDTV.
Around nine policemen and two civilians have also been reportedly injured in the clash that broke out. Speaking on the incident, Sarma said, "The area is big. I was on another side. I will find out and assess the situation."
In Assam, anti-encroachment drives are being carried out after CM Sarma promised to clear encroachments from over 77,000 'bighas' (25,455 acres) of government-owned land for the employment of youth in agricultural purposes.
At least 800 families have been evicted from the Darrang area since Monday, 20 September.
Continuing our drive against illegal encroachments, I am happy and compliment district administration of Darrang and @assampolice for having cleared about 4500 bigha, by evicting 800 households, demolishing 4 illegal religious structures and a private instn at Sipajhar, Darrang. pic.twitter.com/eXG6XBNH6j
— Himanta Biswa Sarma (@himantabiswa) September 20, 2021
Taking to Twitter, Assam CM had said earlier this week, "I am happy and compliment district administration of Darrang and Assam Police for having cleared about 4500 bigha, by evicting 800 households."
Violence in Sipajhar of Darrang district | Reference video of the incident at Gorukhuti, Darrang - the said cameraman has been arrested in a case registered with CID Assam in connection with the incident: GP Singh, Special DGP L&O
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