Assam: Detainee dies in police custody, sparks public outrage in Lakhimpur; IC suspended


A 42-year-old man, Arsabh Ali, who was detained at Khelmati Police Station in Assam’s Lakhimpur district for questioning about a stolen mobile phone, which he reportedly purchased, died under mysterious circumstances in custody on Wednesday night.

According to reports, Ali suddenly fell ill and collapsed within the police station premises, leading to his death.

The news of Ali’s death led to widespread outrage among locals following which the the residents of Khelmati surrounded the police station and started protesting against the cops by pelting stones.

In response to the incident, Assam Director General of Police (DGP) GP Singh issued directives via announcing several immediate actions.

The In-Charge (IC) of the Khelmati Police Station has been placed under suspension following the mysterious death of Ali and an enquiry has also been ordered into the matter.

Taking to X DGP Sing wrote, “Reference death in police custody at Khelmati OP District North Lakhimpur – 1. IC of Khelmati OP has been placed under suspension along with on duty sentry at time of incident. 2. Independent Enquiry has been ordered by Addl SP Biswanath. 3. All mandatory provisions of law & directions of NHRC/AHRC are being followed 4. DIG NR has been directed to proceed to Khelmati immediately.@CMOfficeAssam@CSAssam_

A kin of the deceased said, “He was like a brother to me. He was fully fit, but brought to the police station and was killed. Police picked him up from his home and brought him to the police station before killing him. Why did they kill him? This is totally unacceptable.”

Another local said, “We don’t know what happened to him (Arbash Ali) after he was picked up by the police. But soon we came to know that he was no more. Whatever he might have done, but it is not justified to kill him inside the police station. Even if he is a thief, is it right to kill that person? He had purchased the phone, but he was not involved in theft.”