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Violence spreads to Chirang in Assam, death toll rises to 12

Guwahati, July 23 (): Following the recovery of three bodies on Sunday, the death toll in the communal violence in Assam’s Bodoland area went up to twelve since Friday. The army has been put into service to help the security forces, said the police.

Twelve people were killed in the communal violence, another two were reportedly dead and three were injured as some unknown persons opened fire ruthlessly at the crowded Mongolian Bazaar market in Chirang district on Sunday evening, said sources.

Police however declared that this incident has nothing to do with the July19 communal violence that occurred in Kokrajhar district.

“Though the situation was under control since Saturday, it  remained  to be tense as the people stayed indoors. Army in large numbers has been put into service in order to support the police and paramilitary forces across Kokrajhar district,” said SN Singh, the inspector general of police, Bodoland Territorial Areas District (BTAD).

“No fresh violence was reported in the area except three people being kidnapped on Sunday from a passenger vehicle in Chirang district near Kokrajha. We suspect this incident might be an isolated incident, but still we don’t want to take any probability, “said Mr Singh.

The Kokrajhar district was under curfew since Friday, said the police. The police claimed twelve persons killed in the riot were believed to be from the group of the Bodo community and a religious minority.

As indicated by the police, violence in the area began on Thursday late night when gunmen hit two student leaders Mohibul Islam, and Abdul Siddique Sheikh in Magurbari.

A compensation of Rs 3 lakh was announced to the family members of the victims and Rs 50,000 to those injured in the violence, said Assam Transport Minister Chandan Brahma.

Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi strongly condemned the violence in the district and requested the authorities to take strict action against the people who indulged in violence which has so far claimed 14 lives.