Assam: Second large-scale eviction drive underway in Nagaon district
During the first massive eviction drive on September 23 last year, two locals were killed in police firing in the Sipajhar area of Darrang district.
The Nagaon district administration in Assam on Monday started a second large-scale eviction drive in four villages to clear plots of government land of alleged encroachment, PTI reported.
During the first massive eviction drive, two locals, including a 12-year-old child, were killed in police firing in the Sipajhar area of Darrang district on September 23 last year. One of the victims, Moinul Haque, 28, was shot in the chest as he rushed towards a group of policemen and was trampled on by a government photographer.
On Monday, Nagaon Superintendent of Police Leena Doley told reporters that the eviction drive began in the Santijan Bazaar area. Over 600 security personnel have been deployed at the site.
“After Santijan Bazaar we will clear land in Haidubi area and depending on the time taken there, we will take a decision on carrying out the drive in the remaining two villages,” Doley added.
The drive is being conducted to clear over 1,200 bighas of alleged encroached land, according to PTI. In October, the district administration had served notices to more than 1,000 families to vacate the land.
“From December 13, security personnel are camping here and conducting flag march,” the superintendent of police said, ANI reported. “Many encroachers have already left the area.”
More than 80% residents have dismantled their houses, shops as well as other structures and moved out. Those hit by the evictions have urged the Assam government to provide them with alternative arrangements.
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has said that his government is committed to freeing up encroached Sattra lands across the state. Sattras are monastic institutions and Nagaon is the birthplace of renowned Vaishnavite saint Srimanta Sankardeva.