The death toll in Assam, where protests against the new citizenship law led to clashes between protesters and security personnel last week, rose to five Sunday as two youths succumbed to their injuries in Guwahati.
The family of Ishwar Nayak (25) alleged he was killed in police firing. He succumbed to a bullet injury he suffered during clashes in Guwahati on Thursday, a senior official of the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital (GMCH) told The Indian Express.
Nayak, who hailed from Majuli Tea Estate of Udalguri district, was working at a retail outlet in Guwahati. Waiting outside the GMCH autopsy centre, Nayan Thakuria, his colleague, said Nayak had gone to city’s Latasil ground where thousands had gathered to protest on Thursday. “He went there to participate in the demonstration and also to see popular singer Zubeen Garg. He returned in the afternoon and went to buy some essentials and take out cash from an ATM when some clashes erupted near the city’s Downtown hospital. Police did a lathicharge and fired at protesters there when a bullet hit him in the hip,” Thakuria said.
The other youth who died on Sunday, Abdul Alim (23), hailed from lower Assam’s Barpeta district and was a Bengal-origin Muslim. He was also injured on Thursday in alleged police firing during clashes in Guwahati on Thursday. He died on Sunday at the GMCH.
His uncle Muzzafar Ali said Alim passed Class XII a few years ago. “Alim married around two months back. I can’t even think what his wife must be going through,” he said.
Alim was visiting Guwahati for a few days. His friend Ramzan Ali, who runs a shop, said, “On Thursday, even as a massive gathering was ongoing at Latasil, protesters gathered at Lokhra area, burning tyres and shouting slogans. Police arrived and there was a clash.”
Further details emerged of a truck driver who died Saturday after suffering burn injuries, when a mob set his fuel tanker afire in Sonitpur district. Identified by a neighbour and relative as Azizur Ali (48), a resident of Sipajhar in Darrang district, the truck driver is survived by his daughter and wife. A local police officer said one Bijoy Nath was arrested for the arson.