The Uttar Pradesh Police have arrested a total of 25 people in connection with the shootout in Ubha village of Sonbhadra district that killed 10 people, PTI reported on Thursday. As many as 19 people were injured in Wednesday’s incident.
The police had said the incident took place when Ubha village head Yagya Dutt had gone to take possession of the land that he had purchased two years ago. Villagers gathered at the spot and started to protest. Dutt and his supporters allegedly opened fire on the victims.
The first information report identified 11 people, and said 50 more were involved in the shootout. The police have arrested Girijesh and Vimlesh, two nephews of the village head, and are trying to trace Dutt too.
Villagers and the local administration were on Thursday locked in a standoff to bury the 10 bodies, reported PTI. The villagers were adamant that the bodies be buried at the spot where the shootout took place. However, the administration wanted the burial to take place only where the villagers traditionally bury the dead.
The shootout led to an uproar in the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Council on Thursday. The Opposition forced the adjournment of the Monsoon Session twice. Samajwadi Party legislators also sat on a dharna before the statue of former Prime Minister Charan Singh on the Vidhan Bhawan premises.
The state’s scheduled tribes commission has decided to conduct its own investigation in the matter. It accused the administration of negligence in tackling the dispute. The commission also sent a two-member team to investigate the matter.
Villager Ramraj told PTI on Thursday that three generations of his family have tilled the disputed land, and alleged there had been illegal attempts to evict them. The villagers have demanded that no one involved in the firing should escape punishment.