Protesting Assam farmers caned, over 70 detained

Guwahati, Oct 2 : A number of people, including Assam farmers' leader and RTI activist Akhil Gogoi, were injured Tuesday as police used cane charge and tear gas shells here against marchers protesting over land ownership rights. Over 70 people were detained.

The police action came when supporters of Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti (KMSS), led by Gogoi, were marching towards the state capital complex at Dispur.

Senior Superintendent of Police (City) A.P. Tiwary said the samiti was given an option of organising their programme at a ground but "they did not agree to this".

"They proceeded with their programme without our permission and this is a violation of the prohibitory orders," he said.

At least 40 people, including women, were injured during the cane charge, claimed a protestor.

Earlier, the samiti's application seeking permission to organise a rally and demonstration was rejected by the Kamrup (Metro) district administration.

As police and security forces Tuesday prevented the marchers from going towards Dispur, the protestors shouted slogans condemning the state government.

The protestors scuffled with police, forcing them to fire tear gas shells and resort to cane charge, police said.

Police later detained 73 agitators, including Gogoi and Kamal Kumar Medhi.

"We are going to release the agitators after they give an assurance in writing that they would not take part in such rallies in future," a police officer said.