The Assam Police on Tuesday night arrested the main accused in the lynching of two men in Karbi Anglong on June 8, Time8 reported. Alphajoz Timung was arrested from the district’s Bheloghat Beygaon area, the police said.
Artiste Nilotpal Das and Guwahati-based contractor Abhijeet Nath were reportedly on their way to a waterfall at Kangthilangso in the district, when they stopped their vehicle at the village of Panjuri Kachari to ask for directions.
According to reports, rumours about child snatchers being on the prowl were doing the rounds on social media.
The police said Timung had confronted the duo near the waterfall, accusing them of being child lifters. But the two men reportedly denied, and then headed out. After Timung alerted villagers about the two men and claimed that they had a child in the car, a mob got activated, Director General of Police Kuladhar Saikia told reporters at a press conference on Wednesday.
The police have arrested more than 28 people for being part of the mob. Thirty five others were arrested for spreading rumours on social media, of which, five people have been arrested for allegedly videographing the incident.
In a video of the attack that was circulated on social media, Niloptal Das is heard pleading with the attackers. “Do not kill me…please do not beat me,” he says. “I am an Assamese. Believe me, I am speaking the truth. My father’s name is Gopal Chandra Das and mother’s name is Radhika Das…please let me go.” The mob did not heed his pleas and continued to beat him with bamboo sticks.