Two more bodies were recovered on Monday taking the toll to 19 in the violence in Assam’s Bodoland Territorial Administered Districts, as the Rajdhani Express was stopped by protestors in Kokrajhar district, police said.
The bodies were recovered from the banks of river Gouranga, they said.
Police personnel fired in the air when the bandh supporters tried to forcibly close down shops in Golokgunj and Gauripur towns in Dhubri district during a 12-hour bandh, called by the All Assam Minority Students’ Union (AAMSU) to protest attacks on the minorities, Superintendent of Police, Mr Pradip Saloi said.
Bandh supporters also ransacked the office of Bodoland Peoples’ Front in Gauripur town.
The AAMSU subsequently withdrew the bandh following an appeal by Ministers.
The Delhi-bound Rajdhani Express was stopped at Pratapkhat between Kokrajhar and Gossaigaon by people from nearby villages who alleged that their houses were damaged by miscreants when they moved to relief camps, IGP (BTAD), Mr S.N Singh said.
Trains were controlled at different points as a result.
An additional nine companies of paramilitary forces were deployed in the district while the army was assisting in maintaining law and order, Mr Singh said.
Assam Forest Minister, Mr Rockybul Hussain and Food and Civil Supplies Minister, Mr Nazrul Islam, reached Kokrajhar and appealed to people to maintain peace and calm and not heed rumours.
The violence was triggered with the firing on two student leaders who were critically injured in Kokrajhar.
In a retaliatory attack, four former Bodo Liberation Tigers cadres were killed on Friday night in the district and this led to further attacks and counter-attacks resulting in the deaths.