Fresh clashes in northeast India, toll rises to 26

Published: July 24, 2012
A house burns at Kachugaon village in Kokrajhar district in northeastern state of Assam during violent clashes on July 23, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

A house burns at Kachugaon village in Kokrajhar district in northeastern state of Assam during violent clashes on July 23, 2012. PHOTO: AFP

GUWAHATI: New clashes took the death toll from ethnic violence in India’s remote northeast to 26 on Tuesday despite an official curfew backed by shoot-on-sight orders, police said.

Fighting flared overnight between Bodo tribal groups and Muslim settlers in the west of Assam state, where more than 40,000 villagers have fled their homes to shelter in government buildings, schools and relief camps.

Indian soldiers and paramilitary troops have been on patrol to try to quell the unrest that started on Friday, triggered by long-standing territorial disputes.

“Incidents of arson and violence were reported overnight from several places,” Hagrama Mohilary, head of the Bodoland Territorial Council, a local government body, told AFP by telephone.

“The situation is tense and volatile and we want more security forces, especially reinforcements of army soldiers.”

Local television channels broadcast pictures of several homes that had been set ablaze by rioters.

“Police, army and paramilitary troopers have intensified patrols and a 24-hour, indefinite curfew has been imposed,” Assam Forest Minister Rockybul Hussain said from the worst-hit district of Kokrajhar.

Police issued shoot-on-sight orders late on Monday after rioters burnt shops and houses and attacked rival gangs. The orders mean that mobs breaking the curfew could be shot without warning.

Authorities said an estimated 40,000 people — many of them women and children — had fled their homes to take shelter in relief centres set up at designated government facilities.

“We are providing food and basic medicines to those in need,” Nazrul Islam, another senior state minister, told AFP by telephone.

The Press Trust of India news agency said the fighting started when two Muslim student leaders were shot and seriously injured in Kokrajhar, leading to revenge strikes on Bodo groups.

Northeast India, which is linked to the rest of the country by a narrow land bridge, has seen decades of friction among ethnic and separatist groups, though some of the biggest rebel movements have recently started peace talks with the government.

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Reader Comments (27)

  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Jul 24, 2012 - 4:16PM

    The muslims migrated from Bangladesh is the root couse of unrest in north east India . Now they are not allowed to enter in Mianmar and hence they take the advantage of porous boarder of India . The population of Bangladesh is on the inrease due to Islam and people do not adopting the family planning norms just as in Pakistan , thus the problem will inrease in near future .


  • Pakistani Agnostic
    Jul 24, 2012 - 7:57PM

    so now its Bangladesh’s problem? okay


  • The Flying Object
    Jul 24, 2012 - 8:02PM


    This is a face of your shining India. Rather than ranting slogans against Pakistan all the time, calling Islam the reason for increase in population and spreading misconceptions about Muslims, plz concentrate on bettering these things.
    India is one of the most populated country and 80% of your population is Hindu. Is Hinduism to blame for that? I am a logical person and won’t say that but according to your argument you should think about the ‘problem’ of Hinduism then…
    By the way what about Kashmir then? You have reduced the population for 65 years over there…Recommend

  • 1984
    Jul 24, 2012 - 8:34PM

    @The Flying Object:
    India and China always had a relatively high population throughout the history of mankind mainly because of the favorable climate,rivers for irrigation and mainly because the ground doesnt freeze during winter..The population in Europe had risen only after the homes were electrified with heaters.
    Secondly,now both India and China has realised the dangerous of overpopulation and have been keen in Family planning. However,the muslim masses in india are being misled by leaders to shun family planning measures. The Muslim population in India has risen from 9% in 1951 to 15.6% in 2011.

    Congress thrive on muslim votebank and because of that reason,they even gave voterids to many of these illegals….We need a strong leader to send back all immigrants like what France is doing nowRecommend

  • Bangla.Captain
    Jul 24, 2012 - 9:37PM

    Now the citizen of failed state will have the chance to blame Bangladesh for its failoure to give security all of its citizens.Now all the bengali speaking muslim of WB,assam, tripura will be leveled as illegal Bangladeshi by the anti-muslim hindus.Indians must realize Islam has no boundary, it speaded all over the world not only in Bangla. God save the people of Assam, regardless, Hindu, muslim, christian.


  • khalsa
    Jul 24, 2012 - 9:49PM

    @The Flying Object:
    even this problem is because of muslims. read the article and then comment


  • khalsa
    Jul 24, 2012 - 9:54PM

    you mean to say trouble knows no boundaries


  • Veda
    Jul 24, 2012 - 10:36PM

    @ All pakistanis…..It is army of sikh & hindus protecting muslim minority in Bodo majority area……at least have guts to aknowledge that…..yes there is secterian violence but at least we are handling it in proper way….proud of indian army!


  • sha
    Jul 24, 2012 - 10:51PM

    i hate people who againsent the muslim without ny reason whatevervr they hing they comment but main think is that


  • Giri
    Jul 24, 2012 - 10:55PM

    Muslim groups are common in all the riots cross the worlds from syria to assam. There will always be a tension if outsiders move into the areas threatening the local population. moreso with muslim groups which do not mix with any population on the planet.


  • amalgam
    Jul 24, 2012 - 11:01PM


    please keep your citizen at your home , we don;t want these illegal migrants.
    secondly why your bangladeshi citizen come to our country ??if its a failed country as you said why don;t you give them jobs in your own “growing” caliphate ?


  • B+
    Jul 24, 2012 - 11:17PM

    True face of Shining India…
    @Veda: Indian Army is protecting Muslim LOL that is why only Muslims are killed not Hindus…


  • amalgam
    Jul 24, 2012 - 11:29PM


    Show me where it is written that only muslims are killed? how can you expect bodos who are 5% in assam kill more illegal bangladeshee muslims who officially constitute 33% of assam ?


  • Arijit Sharma
    Jul 25, 2012 - 12:23AM

    It is the same story everywhere. Muslims generally have an over inflated view of their utility to society.


  • Abbasi
    Jul 25, 2012 - 12:36AM

    It is humans that are being killed and the blood is always red…Not Hindu, Muslim, Christian, Jew or what ever,,,,,,Please, all of you,,,,grow up, and tackle the probler, rather than playing the blame game…Good Luck


  • B+
    Jul 25, 2012 - 12:52AM

    “The Press Trust of India news agency said the fighting started when two Muslim student leaders were shot and seriously injured in Kokrajhar”
    I can see Muslim is quoted here not Hindu…

    For all my Shinning Indians here are some more facts:

    In recent years, Hindu and Christian tribes have vented strong anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim sentiment against Bangladeshi settlers. The Bodo tribe has clashed with Bengalis in deadly riots several times since the 1950s. Thirty years ago, about 2,000 people, mainly Muslims, died in riots in Assam. (Reuters).


  • The Flying Object
    Jul 25, 2012 - 3:23AM

    @All Indians

    Well if someone says that Hindus and Sikhs are protecting Muslims in that area, and iff this is true, then I respect those Hindus and Sikhs. Regardless of religion, saving and serving humanity is a noble act.

    Secondly, all comments I see here suggest that Muslims and on top of that Islam is to blame for all the mess in that area. Give me a break! Well the hard truth is that Muslims have suffered in India since partition. I don’t want to repeat history here; there are some very bitter facts that my Indian friends already know. If you want to know what goes on then Google ‘Sachar Comission Report’.

    And let me say that population rise is not a cause of these troubles. The real cause is that the national wealth (and this is true for almost all nations) is not distributed equally among the masses due to the financial system. The rich remain and continue to increase their wealth whereas the poor get poorer. Then the poor ask for their rights and the rich say the your population is too much so please control your population. What has happened in countries such as Pakistan where population has been controlled. Nothing…
    The only good population reduction does is that it reduces the poor population so that the rich have less to worry about. Mother nature provides everything; its just mismanaged by some corrupt leaders and so the poor world will keep mourning…


  • jordan
    Jul 25, 2012 - 5:52AM

    @B :
    Bodos killed two muslim student leaders because they killed a School Teacher again in retaliation they killed four bodo youthsRecommend

  • Dr.A.K.Tewari
    Jul 25, 2012 - 6:25AM

    @the flying , My provocative comment was specially for people like you who deliberatly do not like to accept the negative impacts of Islamic belief and traditions . The population of Pakistan has increased five fold since 1947 and the same trend we notice here in India and Bangladeshi muslims with some change due to education and prosperity . Population in kashmir is on rise de spite of total expulsion of kashmiri pundit from there . Negative aspects of Islam can not be accepted by people like you becouse it is a religion of peace .


  • 1984
    Jul 25, 2012 - 7:07AM

    @The Flying Object:
    Once again,you guys quote the Sachar commission report which shows the symptom but deliberately ignore the reason behind the problem.
    First of all,Sachar commission made an error in the report by including only Urdu speaking muslims,the ones who are in the BIMARU belt.
    Secondly,you talk as if only muslims are among the poorest,whereas it is spread across all religions of India
    Also,you reject the effect of population growth when you know that its almost impossible for a middle class person to give good education to 5 kids compared to 2.Please check the muslims from Tamilnadu and Malabar belt.They’re as prosperous as the local hindus because they limit their family
    National wealth is among the rich and not among the poor,This is common for all religion.There are more wealthy muslim businessmen in India than Pakistan.Ever heard of Azim Premji who was once the richest man in India.
    Didnt Abdul Kalam rise from a poor village to the the director of ISRO???
    *I can quote a lot of examples but the problem is that many of your people’s mind is so closed that you reject the truth even when its staring at ur face.You will only try to relatiate using words like “Gujarat Riots”,”Sachar commission”,”Shabana Azmi”,”Shiv Sena” even without even analysing it *


  • Rajendra Rana
    Jul 25, 2012 - 9:51AM

    As per partition of India in 1947 there must be no Muslims in India.All the Muslims at present in India are illegal migrants and are responsibility of Pakistan and BD as these countries are created for Muslims only


  • abdullah
    Jul 25, 2012 - 9:58AM

    yeah every one is justifying if they are bangladeshis ,hindus ,muslims …but we are all forgetting that we are humans..we should think like humans and stop these religion in the world allows you to kill another human ..


  • Abhi
    Jul 25, 2012 - 10:27AM

    The problem is that Indians are unable to feed its population and to take people’s focus away from this, they keep blaming the Muslims. The fact is that India has one of the highest population in the world and which is mostly Hindus. Hinduism and Hindu values are one of the reasons for the increase in Indian population. Islam cannot be blamed for population increase as there are many Islamic countries which are sparsely populated.


  • Waseem Yousaf
    Jul 25, 2012 - 11:29AM

    Be human first. Not indians,Pakistansi,muslims,hinduss,bangalies and blah blah blah.Recommend

  • amalgam
    Jul 25, 2012 - 12:18PM

    @Waseem Yousaf

    But this so called “humanity” comes in pakistanis only when muslims get killed . ironic naa?


  • asad
    Jul 25, 2012 - 12:25PM

    As per partition of India in 1947 there must be no Muslims in India.All the Muslims at present in India are illegal migrants and are responsibility of Pakistan and BD as these countries are created for Muslims only


  • Indian
    Jul 26, 2012 - 11:34AM

    If Islam has no boundries, then why the Middle east is separated as Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Yemen, etc. ? Above all, if Islam did not have any boundries, why did Bangladesh became separated from Pakistan in 1971 ?


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