Rattled by unprecedented violence during Tuesday’s 12-hour shutdown called by 31 organisations headed by All Assam Minority Students’ Union, the Assam government on Wednesday banned bandhs for a month while cracking the whip on troublemakers.
The bandh supporters armed with crude weapons directed their anger on police, media persons and Bengali Hindus – soft targets not connected to the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) violence that was the reason behind the shutdown – leaving one person dead, one missing, 80 injured and 70 houses razed.
Tuesday’s casualty took the death toll to 90 since violence broke out in the BTC areas on July 20.
Chief minister Tarun Gogoi on Wednesday convened a marathon security review meeting involving top administrative, state and Central security agencies. Apart from prohibiting bandhs, the brief was to take strict action against troublemakers and shoot if need be to check violence.
“Strict action will be taken against any person whose name appears in FIRs for rioting,” inspector general of Assam police (law and order) LR Bishnoi said. Home secretary GD Tripathi said action would be taken by the local administration.
Police, meanwhile, said Kamtapur Liberation Organisation, Adivasi Cobra Militants and Birsa Commando Force were under the scanner along with National Democratic Front of Boroland (NDFB) for starting the BTC fire.