The communal violence in Assam has brought the death toll to 41, leaving nearly 200,000 villagers homeless, as ethnic clashes between Bangladeshi immigrants and Bodos entered into its seventh day on Wednesday.
Fresh riots broke out early Wednesday in Assam's northwest, where three people were reportedly killed. Two bodies were recovered from Kokrajhar, while three people were discovered dead in Chirang district, where some improvements in the situation were observed.
According to latest reports, three more people were injured in the firing reported in Baksa on Thursday, following which more central forces were deployed to combat the situation.
Thirteen columns of the Army were dispatched in the riot-stricken areas of Dhubri, Bongaigaon, Kokrajhar and Chirang, where indefinite curfew and shoot-at-sight orders were also imposed.
The on-going violence has led to scores of homeless people belonging to 400 villages seeking shelter at 128 relief camps set up close to the conflict zones. Assam Chief Minster Tarun Gogoi, who reached Kokrajhar on Thursday morning, maintained, "There are no fresh killings but the relief camp inmates have increased, mainly due to panic by fleeing villagers. I appeal to people not to give credence to rumours."
Meanwhile, the Northeast Frontier Railway, which halted its services, allowed its Rajdhani Express to run, giving relief to 30,000 passengers who were left stranded amidst the violence. Around 2,000 central security personnel were reportedly deployed to patrol railway tracks and check Guwahati-bound trains.
Union Home Secretary R K Singh ruled out the possibility of any attacks from across the border, saying that the international border is completely secured.
The centre has demanded Assam government to arrest those accused of instigating the violence in the state. "We have asked the state government to book ring leaders of both sides so that violence can be checked immediately. No one involved in the violence will be spared," Singh said.