On Thursday, two people were killed, allegedly by police bullets, during Assam's Eviction Drive at Dholpur Gorukhuti area in Assam's Darrang district. The Assam Police had undertaken the controversial drive to evict the Bengali-speaking illegal Muslim settlers in the region.
The police said that a massive mob of 2,000 had attacked them in Dholpur, forcing them to open lathi-charge and fire. The incident sparked profound contempt from the Opposition and on social media.
CM Backed The Police
However, the visuals of the fight show the police personnel firing at an unseen target behind the huts and the chaff. After that, uniformed men were seen surrounding a man, who suddenly collapsed following an apparent gunshot. After the crowd clears, the man is seen lying motionless on the floor, but a man named Bijay Shankar Baniya repeatedly kicks and jumps on his seemingly dead body.
The later visuals show policemen pulling Baniya back and carry the lifeless body. The Chief Minister of the state backed the Police and said, "Police are doing their duty. As per my information, people attacked police with machetes, spears and other things", Hindustan Times reported.
Darrang district superintendent of police, Sushanta Biswa Sarma, also the Chief Minister's brother, identified the two dead people as Saddam Hussain and Sheikh Forid. The killings triggered a political war, and the opposition parties demanded a judicial probe.
On June 7, Sarma had visited the region and had guided the district administration to remove the 'illegal settlers' for a community farming project that would benefit a large section of young in the region.
How Should Borders Not Cost Lives?
The question arises regarding the need for the eviction process. On human grounds, the government needed to investigate the native place of the 'illegal step' before deciding on any eviction drive. Moreover, for any eviction process to take place by the government for commercial purposes, the government is liable to arrange for appropriate rehabilitation for its citizen before jumping the gun. Moreover, India has historically shared friendly relations with Bangladesh after the 1971 war.
Therefore, assuming that the residents were indeed 'illegal' and had crossed the border to settle in that district, would the decision to evict them without any proper process, a pragmatic decision? The rule of law states that the involved governments must follow a procedure to send people who have illegally crossed the border. While one party says that the locals had come to attack the Police, opening fire and killing two people is not the desired consequence of any supposed 'progressive' measure.: