2 arrested in controversial arms training camp case in Assam

The Assam police have arrested two individuals in connection with an arms training camp organized by the right-winged Hindutva group Rashtriya Bajrang Dal. The controversial camp, which took place between July 27 and July 30, saw approximately 400 youths from various parts of Assam participating in firearm training at a school in Mangaldoi, Darrang district.

The arrested individuals, Hemanta Payeng, and Ratan Das, are associated with the school where the camp was held, holding different roles. Hemanta Payeng serves as the president of the school’s managing committee, while Ratan Das is a staffer at the institution.

Interestingly, Hemanta Payeng has filed a First Information Report (FIR) claiming that Abhijit Ghosh sought permission from him to organize a yoga camp at the school during the same period. Payeng expressed that he was not aware of the Bajrang Dal’s arms training camp and learned about it only through media reports.

The situation escalated when a video of the arms training camp surfaced on social media, drawing widespread criticism and outrage towards both the state government and the Darrang district administration. The video showcased youths from different parts of Assam receiving firearms training during the camp.

As a result of the incident, a case has been registered at the Mangaldoi police station under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) – 153A, which pertains to promoting enmity between different groups, and 34, dealing with acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention.