The army on Wednesday killed a villager, identified as Thingtu Ngemu (35), in the Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh. Ngemu died on the spot after the troopers of 21 Para (special forces) opened firing at him ‘mistaking him to be a militant’. The incident took place when security forces were carrying out a counter-insurgency operation in the district.
On Thursday, while admitting about the “tragic incident”, the army called it a case of “mistaken identity”. Defense spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Suneet Newton said that the army troops had laid an ambush in the area based on intelligence inputs.
“It was during this time, the individual who has got killed, came into the ambush and on being challenged he made very suspicious movements and rushed towards the ambush party. This forced the army to open controlled fire resulting in the individual suffering fatal injury. It is a case of mistaken identity,” said Newton.
On Thursday, locals staged protest in front of the deputy commissioner’s office and sought justice for the killing.
“We cannot accept this. How an innocent villager is killed is totally insane. We demand a proper investigation and the guilty should be punished. At the same time the family of the deceased should be compensated properly,” said a protesting villager.