The police told NDTV that locals resisted the eviction drive and started pelting stones
A fierce face-off turned into a brutal clash with sticks between the police and locals during an anti-encroachment drive in Assam's Darrang district today. Nine policemen and two civilians are said to be injured in the clash at Dholpur, during which the policemen were even seen opening fire.
A video from the site shows a man with a stick charging towards dozens of policemen - in riot gear and armed with sticks and guns - being overpowered and thrashed. The blows don't stop even as he lies motionless on the ground.
The Superintendent of Police, Darrang, told NDTV that the locals resisted the eviction drive and started pelting stones. "Our nine policemen were injured. Two civilians were also injured. They have been shifted to hospital. Now things are normal," SP Sushanta Biswa Sarma said.
Mr Sarma, who was at the site of the clash, added, "We couldn't complete the eviction because of the situation. We will assess later. We are returning as of now."
But when asked about the footage of the local being shot and then beaten, he said "The area is big. I was on another side. I will find out and assess the situation."
There was already tension in the area since Monday as 800 families have been evicted.
Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had tweeted after the eviction drive on Monday, "I am happy and compliment district administration of Darrang and Assam Police for having cleared about 4500 bigha, by evicting 800 households."
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