Goalpara (Assam): An alleged bike-lifter was injured in police firing as he was trying to flee in Assam’s Goalpara district on Thursday, a police officer said.

Additional superintendent of police Mrinal Deka said based on a tip-off, a police party had laid a trap to nab the accused near Naranarayan Setu in Kumori area.

The accused was spotted nearing the site in a vehicle at around 1.30 pm. As the police party signalled him to stop, the person tried to reverse the vehicle and flee, Deka said.

But the car fell into a roadside ditch and the suspected criminal immediately got out of the vehicle. He pointed a pistol towards the police team and tried to run, the police officer said.

We had to fire to stop him and he sustained a bullet injury in his leg. He was later taken to the Goalpara civil hospital, where he is being treated, Deka said.

The police team recovered a handmade pistol and another toy gun from the vehicle.

Another person traveling with the suspected criminal has also been arrested, Deka said, adding that the police are also checking the credentials of the person whose vehicle they were driving.

The alleged bike-lifter is wanted in several cases in Assam as well as bordering Meghalaya, the police officer said.

At least 28 suspected militants and criminals were shot dead in the state since May as they reportedly tried to snatch service weapons or attempted to escape from custody, while 49 accused were injured along with some other policemen.

The increase in such shoot-outs whipped up a political furore with the Opposition alleging that the Assam Police has turned “trigger happy” and is indulging in “open killings” under Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma-led regime, which assumed charge on May 10.

Unfazed by the criticism of his government over recent encounter killings, Sarma on July 15 had said in Assam Assembly that the state police has “full operational liberty” to fight against the criminals within the ambit of law.

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