Death toll rises to nine in Bengal violence, six arrested

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Birbhum (West Bengal) : With two more persons succumbing to their injuries since the late hours on Friday, the toll in the crude bomb explosion in West Bengal's Birbhum district has risen to nine, police said on Saturday.


"Nine people have died so far in the crude bomb explosion following clashes between two groups in Birbhum district's Labpur since yesterday (Friday). A few more are critically injured," Birbhum Superintendent of Police N. Sudheer Kumar told.

"After seven people dying till Friday evening, two more have succumbed to their injuries in the hospital," he said.

Six people have been arrested so far while police have registered suo motu cases against several members of the two groups for the violent clashes on Friday.

According to police, the clashes between the two groups were an offshoot of a war for supremacy in the area.

"We have started two separate cases since yesterday (Friday), one for the clashes and the other one for making crude bombs. We have arrested six miscreants so far in the first case," Kumar said.

Police claimed some of those involved in making crude bombs died in the accidental explosion.

"The people who died in the explosion were involved in making crude bombs. Bomb-making materials like stone chips and explosives have been recovered from some of the deceased's house," Kumar said.

The situation became tense in the area since Friday morning as a clash broke out regarding control of sand mining in the region. Bombs were hurled at several places in the village, including school premises, causing panic among students and villagers.

"No incidents of violence in the area were, however, reported on Saturday. Adequate number of police personnel have been deployed to monitor the situation," the officer added.