In a recent case of mob lynching, two Assamese youths were beaten to death by local villagers for being mistaken as child abductors in a remote area of Karbi Anglong district of Assam. This incident reportedly took place on Friday night after there were rumors about ‘XopaDhora’ (child kidnapper) on social media, reported The Hindustan Times.
Nilotpal Das, a sound engineer working in Goa and Mumbai, and Abhijeet Nath, who ran his own business, went to Kangthilangso, a famous waterfall when the locals allegedly attacked them.
NDTV reported that there were rumors of the presence of kidnappers in Dokmoka in West Karbi Anglong District in Assam.
Reportedly, two men stopped at Panjuri Kanchari around 8 pm to ask for directions when the villagers got suspicious. The locals then mistook them for being child lifters and started attacking their black Scorpio.
Nilotpal and Abhijeet tried to flee the scene which led to them being tied and beaten. Both of them died on the spot. In a video which went viral on social media, Nilotpal Das can be seen pleading and begging in front of the attackers, “Don’t kill me…please don’t beat me. I am an Assamese. I am speaking the truth. My father’s name is Gopal Chandra Das and mother’s name is Radhika Das…please let me go”.
The Chief Minister condemned the ill-fated incident and promised justice for the victim’s families. He was quoted as saying, “It is condemnable that people are being killed after being influenced by rumors and superstition,” NDTV reported.
The Chief Minister also ordered a probe into the incident and directed Mukesh Agarwal, Additional Director General of Police(ADG) to look into the matter.
NDTV quoted the ADG as saying, “We have the cellphones of both the victims as well as the mobile phones used to shoot the attack. We have begun our investigation, and the accused will be arrested soon,”
Furthermore, he stated that this is not the first incident in the state and many such incidents have occurred in the state in the last few days in Sonitpur, West Karbi Anglong, and Nagaon.
He informed, “The incidents follow a similar pattern. It is either a mentally challenged person or a new face who come under attack.”
A similar spree of incidents in June 2016 took place in lower Assam districts of Chirang, Darrang, Baksa, Sonitpur, after rumors of child kidnappers spread, leaving four people dead, The Hindustan Times noted.
The Hindustan Times informed that rumors were doing rounds of the presence of ‘XopaDhora’ or child kidnappers on social media. Assam ADG told, “Once the rumors start, they take a few days to die down.”
Also published on Medium.