GOALPARA, March 17 � In a shocking incident, one Rana Das (31) of Kalitapara died on the spot when a security personnel who tired to intervene and stop a melee caused by two groups of stubborn Holi revellers over a stone-throwing incident, fired point blank at him at Bamunpara Point along College Road here today at 4.30 pm. Protesting against the police brutality, several organisations have called a 12-hour Goalpara bandh from 5 am tomorrow.
A pall of gloom descended on the entire town and crowds were seen at many places. Police personnel were seen using their batons to disperse the crowds, especially in front of Solace Nursing Home, where the body of Rana Das was kept.
Talking to this correspondent, Superintendent of Police Nitul Gogoi however denied his presence at the spot at the time of the unfortunate incident. He claimed that the incident happened as a result of a minor scuffle between the security personnel and the Holi reveller, who tried to snatch the service weapon from him. He also informed that the police shifted the victim for immediate medical attention to Solace Nursing Home. He said an inquiry into the incident would be conducted by a senior police official to find out the exact cause of the incident, although he ruled out any foul play.
However, an eye witness claimed said that a vehicle from SP security stopped and tried to handle the situation first by firing a round in air and then point blank hitting the victim on the chest. The witness further said police arrived on the spot and resorted to mild lathicharge and then lobbed tear gas shells to disperse the crowd which swelled by hundreds following the incident. Conscious citizens reacted sharply and some said that it was a case of blatant human rights violation and some people who debated at the gatherings also criticized the police over inept handling of the situation that lead to a loss of an innocent life.