Woman crushed by bulldozer during land eviction

A snapshot taken from the footage.

The woman was caught under the tracks of the bulldozer

A woman is being treated for severe injuries after being crushed underneath a bulldozer while resisting attempts to evict her and other villagers from their land in a new industrial zone east of Hanoi.

Le Thi Cham, 54, was one of hundreds of farmers trying to resist clearance of the site on July 10 at Cam Dien industrial zone in Hai Duong, a province 57 kilometres from the capital.

Witnesses said she was hit by the bulldozer which then ran over the upper part of her body.

Video footage showed Ms. Cham lying under the bulldozer struggling desperately to escape.

Some of the people around her were screaming in panic and tried to alert the driver.

They said he did not respond at first but eventually reversed the vehicle and drove off.

The video footage went viral on social media with thousands of “shares” and received tens of thousands of comments from angry bloggers.

Ms. Cham was unconscious when she arrived at a local hospital.

She was later moved to the larger Viet Duc hospital in Hanoi.

The Thanh Nien [Youth] newspaper reported that she was in a critical condition.

More police arrived at the scene as bloggers called for action against what they termed heartless developers and officials.

They tried to block bloggers who were arriving at the scene to send further reports.

Local police later called a news conference and denied that the incident had taken place.

They said the video footage had been faked as it would be impossible for a woman to survive after being crushed in such a way.

Witnesses said she appeared to have survived because of the soft soil, which cushioned her as she was ground under the tracks. They said she would have had no chance if the earth had been harder.

The next morning, a blogger managed to get into the hospital and was able to speak briefly to Ms Cham.

She was quoted as accusing the driver of the bulldozer of ignoring shouts and warnings from the crowd that she was underneath his tracks.

It is the latest in a series of violent confrontations during land evictions, which have been gathering pace in recent years.

In early 2012, two fish farmers resisted an eviction with homemade mines and firearms in a suburb of Hai Phong.

Three months later, thousand of troops and police were sent to enforce an eviction against resisting farmers in Van Giang district, on the outskirts of Hung Yen province.

In September 2013, a farmer, Dang Ngoc Viet, from Thai Binh province shot dead five local officials working on land eviction. He then shot and killed himself.