The Assam Police on Thursday suspended two of its personnel after a man detained in connection with the theft of a mobile phone died in custody in Lakhimpur district, The Indian Express reported.

The man who died, identified as 42-year-old Arshab Ali, who was a resident of South Chandmari village in the district, had been detained a day earlier along with four others in a mobile phone theft case. They had been taken to the Khelmati police outpost.

“The case was registered in the North Lakhimpur police station,” The Indian Express quoted an unidentified police officer as saying. “In relation to that, a team from the Khelmati police outpost detained five people from the West Chandmari area and took them to the outpost around 11 pm.”

Two among the five detained were the main accused in the theft case. The other three, including Ali, were accused of buying the allegedly stolen phones.

According to the police officer, Ali, who was sitting on a bench, fell over and became unconscious on Thursday morning. He was taken to the Lakhimpur Medical College but was declared dead on arrival, the newspaper quoted the police officer as saying.

The news of his death sparked outrage among the locals and they surrounded the outpost, The Hindu reported. Stones were thrown at police officers. Authorities later pacified the crowd.

The locals alleged that the phone was stolen from Bormoria village and Ali had only bought it, according to The Hindu.

On Thursday, Director General of Police Gyanendra Pratap Singh said that the officer in charge of the police outpost, Dipankar Changmai, and the night sentry on duty had been suspended.

Singh, in a social media post, said that an independent enquiry had been ordered by the Biswanath district’s additional superintendent of police.

All mandatory provisions of law and directions of National Human Rights Commission/Assam Human Rights Commission are being followed, he added.