riots and firing in the middle of guwahati on June22.
background - the govt had not developed layouts or transport in outlying areas for 63 years after independence. guwahati has a bunch of wooded hilly areas and wetlands on periphery and some islanded in the middle. in last 20 yrs, migrant workers from other parts of the state had settled in these areas via encroachment. they cut the vegetation, built huts, then permanent housing. a network of paths and lanes lead up these hills where bajaj autos and bikes can go mostly. its like the desi version of the brazilian favellas but not so densely populated. it used to be one of my hobbies to walk through all these semi-forested areas to explore unknown facets of my neck of the woods
the spark - GoA decides to evict these people for whatever reason and use police and elephants to get into these areas.http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/11602 ... mages-News
this obviously pissed off the settlers and they protested under various orgs.
the counterstrike - there is a protest by these evicted people led by one akhil gogoi, a new 'leader' of the resistance who allegedly says he will turn assam into another libya. so while the evictees join the protest, the real operational manouver group stages from deep in western part of the state as far as dhubri on BD border (per reports pieced together from train travellers by TV later).....groups of 100s of young men all motivated and trained as the elite storm troopers. they join the protest near dispur capital complex, moving through gaps in the frontal "holding echelon" and running amuck once they breached the frontline....burning cars with prepared cans of petrol....hurling huge stones...beating up police with thick lathis......
I could see even a woman's elite batallion using sticks to break windows of buses.
police started firing and killed 3 people when tear gas failed. one 9 yr old boy died from two direct shots to the chest - the guy who dragged him to hospital told his father he had seen a cop come off the line of cops and use his service revolver to pump 2 shots at nearly point blank range into the poor kid. TV footage of the corpse confirms the 2 chest shots. this is another side scandal about the whole mess.
meantime prafulla mahanta has also made an appearance. and GoA says the evictions will continue and only those >15yr encroachers will get land pattas.http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/117104030/AFPhttp://www.gettyimages.com/detail/117105872/AFPhttp://www.thehindu.com/news/national/a ... 126774.ecehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJs_H_AB ... r_embedded