A curfew was imposed in parts of Assam’s Hailakandi district on Monday after a clash between two groups, India Today reported. Two police officers and several others were injured in the clash.
Tension began at Hailakandi’s Serispore Tea Garden area after an e-rickshaw driver and his passengers entered into an argument. After this confrontation, people from two separate groups gathered at the site and started attacking each other.
“Both parties were pelting stones at each other,” AH Laskar, second officer in charge at the Hailakandi police station, told Barak Bulletin. “We got the information [about the clash] around 8.30 pm [on Monday] after which we immediately mobilised forces. Additional SP [superintendent of police] also rushed to the spot.”
Witnesses told the news website that religious places were also vandalised amid the chaos.
Rohan Jha, Hailakandi’s district magistrate, issued an order imposing curfew at the tea garden area and three villages – Itarkandi, Narainpur and Chandpur, according to India Today. The curfew will stay in force until further orders.
All government and private offices and shops in the areas will remain closed, according to the order. “No kind of gathering or public meetings or rallies shall be allowed,” it added.
There is a total ban on public movement, except for medical emergencies. Those reporting for Covid-19 duties or hospital jobs will also be exempted from the restrictions.
Nizam Uddin Choudhury, an MLA from Hailakandi’s Algapur constituency, urged residents to maintain peace. “Please don’t take law in your own hands,” he said, according to India Today. “Whatever happened will be thoroughly investigated and action will be taken against the culprits.”