Three persons, including a village headman, were killed and three others seriously injured after a group of suspected cow smugglers attacked them near the Bangladesh border in Meghalaya’s West Jaintia Hills district, police said on Saturday.

The incident occurred at around 2.30 pm on Friday when the six were returning to their village Amlani after attending an official meeting at Amlarem, a sub-divisional town in the district, the police said.

The six were stopped at a place near Trangblang village and attacked by the suspected cow smugglers, a police officer said.

While the village headman, the village secretary and another member of the village were killed on the spot, three others, who were seriously injured, were rescued and admitted to the Jowai Civil Hospital, the superintendent of police (SP) of West Jaintia Hills district, Vivek Syiem, told PTI.

Initially, the main accused, his brother and their cousin were arrested, the SP said, adding, later, the police arrested three others, including another brother of the main accused.

According to villagers, the headman and other villagers, earlier this week, had apprehended the main accused when he was trying to smuggle cattle to Bangladesh.

He was assaulted by the villagers and the police had to rescue him, a police officer said.

An FIR was lodged against the village headman and others on Wednesday, the officer said.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.

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