Guwahati, Aug 23 (IANS): An Assam legislator was arrested on Thursday for his role in the ethnic violence in the State, police said. Pradip Brahma belongs to the Bodoland Peoples' Front (BPF).
Soon after his arrest, the district administration imposed an indefinite curfew in Kokrajhar district from 5 am. But hundreds of BPF supporters defied the curfew and came out to the streets and blocked railway tracks at several places, including Kokrajhar railway station, demanding Brahma's immediate release.
"Brahma was arrested from his residence after midnight," a police officer said. He was held after seven cases were registered against him in Fakiragram and Dotama police stations in Kokrajhar district, Inspector General of Police LR Bishnoi told IANS. Police sources said complaints were filed against the legislator by Bengali-speaking Muslims from the Dotama area.
The BPF, led by its chief Hagrama Mihilary, is in power in the Bodoland Territorial Council that runs the four Bodoland Territorial Autonomous Districts. The party is also a partner in the State's Congress-led government. Brahma is close to Mohilary and represents the West Kokrajhar assembly constituency.
On Wednesday night, fresh violence had broken out in Dhubri district in which one person was injured and two people went missing.
Kokrajhar, Chirang and Dhubri districts in western Assam have been hit by ethnic clashes between Bodos and Bengali-speaking Muslim settlers from July 19. As many as 77 people have been killed in the violence and over four lakh people displaced.