09/24/2005: "AIDS ambush threat to army in North-East"
AIDS ambush threat to army in North-East KOUNTEYA SINHA TIMES NEWS NETWORK [ SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2005 10:06:17 AM ]
SHILLONG: Insurgent groups in the North-East are now threatening to use a new weapon against the security forces. The Assam Rifles has received threats from militant organisations of this region that they would let loose HIV infected women to spread the disease among jawans posted in Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland and Tripura. National Aids Control Organisation (NACO) officials also said that defence minister Pranab Mukherjee had once raised the issue of such a threat in one of the plenary meetings between NACO and armed forces’ officials.
Unsung by all, Jessami defends State's territory Source: The Sangai Express
Imphal, September 23: “It has been for the sake of protecting the land that the people of Jessami village have been fighting the encroachment upon the territory of Manipur by people from beyond Nagaland border for the last many years. The State Government should be more practical when it comes to the question of protecting its territorial integrity.” This was stated by Wejope Lohe, a member of the Village Council of Jessami, while talking to mediapersons. Located at a distance of about 111 kms from Ukhrul district headquarters, Jessami is the border village of Manipur with Nagaland and its people have been at loggerheads with the people of Melori village on the Nagaland side over demarcation of the boundary. Lohe strongly deplored the indifferent attitude of the State Government towards the plight of the people living in the remote area despite contributing their mite in protecting the territorial integrity of the State. It is for the sake of protecting the territory of Manipur that the people of Jessami have been fighting against encroachment from beyond the border, he said, adding that the State Government should be more practical when it comes to the issue of protecting the territorial integrity of Manipur.
He pointed out that the State Government should take up some pro-active role in resolving the border dispute with the neighbouring State of Nagaland before it is too late. Although ‘Choka land’ has been recognised as the political boundary of the two neightbouring States, the villages have their own inter-village boundaries which demarcate one from the other. The people of Melori of Nagaland are claiming that the boundary of Nagaland lies 6 kms within Jessami village. It is said that the Village guards from Nagaland side who are equipped with 303 guns are not allowing the villagers of Jessami to tend their fields located near the border and the crops grown by the Jessami villagers are being destroyed. On the other hand, the hospital building at Jessami which was inaugurated by Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh in 2003 has ceased functioning in the absence of any doctor and other necessary infrastructures. The PHC at Kamjong which had also been inaugurated by the Chief Minister has been also laying useless.
NPF legislator K Therie denies suspension
Dimapur, September 22 : Denying receipt of any formal order of suspension from the Nagaland People's Front (NPF), former state finance minister and NPF legislator K Therie on Thursday described his reported suspension from the NPF as "political stunt". In a statement, Therie appealed to all his sympathizers and well-wishers to take the matter "sportingly". The NPF in a meeting on Wednesday had "officially" suspended Therie for anti-party activities.
Therie said inner party democracy had guaranteed freedom of expression which is also the fundamental right of a citizen. "Expressing our thoughts within the four corners of the party forum for the improvement of the functioning of the party and government is the right of any party member," the former finance minister said. In a democracy, it is for the majority to either accept or reject suggestions, he said, pledging his support to the NPF-led Democratic Alliance of Nagaland (DAN) government's common minimum programme. Therie, however, said the "certificate" of his performance "could come only from the electorate". [hindustantimes]
Priority to be laid on bridges for NH-53 devt By Our Staff Reporter Sagaing Express
IMPHAL, Sep 23 : With the Centre releasing the first instalment of funds for the development of NH-53, the 36 BRTF, which has its headquarters at Silchar will stress on strengthening and building the bailey bridges at Makru and Barak to carry 24 tonne weight vehicles. Speaking to The Sangai Express the Commandant of 36 BRTF said that the Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has recently released an amount of Rs 17.78 crores for the development of NH-53. The first priority will be the repairing and development of Makru and Barak bridges, said the Commandant and added that in the second phase the task of black topping the road will be taken up. The Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways agreed to release the sum of Rs 17.78 crores after Chief Secretary Jarnail Singh met officials of the Ministry at New Delhi on September 14. With the Centre sanctioning the first phase of the funds, construction work of the highway will be intensified from October, said a reliable source.
The BRTF authority had earlier approached the Centre to sanction Rs 22 crores to develop the road from Barak upto Silchar, but the Centre decided to concentrate on the Manipur stretch first and sanctioned Rs 17.78 crores to develop the stretch between Barak and Jiribam. The amount released is the first phase.
The BRTF has set its eyes on completing the strengthening exercise of the two bridges by November this year. The target is set to strengthen the bridges so that it can carry vehicles weighing up to 24 tonnes.
The next task is to black top the road from Barak upto Uchathon, said the source adding that March next year is the target set for the black topping work to finalise. Funds will not be a problem, said the source and added that the Centre is ready to sanction the next instalment as and when it is required. The Chief Security was also assured that security too will not be a problem as adequate troops will be deployed to sanitise the highway to make it secure and help the development work progress unhindered, added the source. Towards this end the authority has identified 17 sites for CRPF camps to come up on the highway. A sum of Rs 14 lakhs has been earmarked for the construction of each camp, said a source and added that 20 Coys of CRPF will be deployed along the route. The construction work of some of the camps have been finalised, added the source. Even as the BRTF has set its eyes on first strengthening the bridges along the Barak to Jiribam stretch, a number of Jiribam bound vehicles from Imphal were stranded near Ragaolung village as a bridge there has developed some snags. Repairing work of the bridge is on at a full pace but it is most likely that the vehicles will be stranded over night at the spot. Meanwhile a meeting was held at the Kali Mandap at Kalinagar at Jiribam today evening to discuss the development of NH-53.
The meeting decided that the Highway Development Council along with the public will approach the authority concerned to speed up the developmental work of NH-53. Representatives of different organisations who had gone to Jiribam along with the Highway Development Council from Imphal as well as representatives of different communities and social organisations of Jiribam took part in the meeting.
The meeting also decided to welcome any individual or any social organisation which wish to join the Highway Development Council. Addressing the meeting, the chairperson of the Jiribam Municipal Council H Brojen said that it is a good sign that the attention of the people has been drawn towards the development of NH-53. Brojen further said that it would be appropriate to study how much money has been pumped in for the development work as well as to see whether the work is in sync with the amount released.
It is also important to make all understand of the need to develop the said route, he added.
A number of speaker said that since Jiribam has been cut off from mainland Manipur, this had led a large number of people to wonder whether Jiribam is a part of Manipur or not.
Members of the Highway Development Council made it clear that their mission is not only to develop the road but also to ensure that the living conditions of the people living along the highway is improved.
The Council will identify the bad portions of the highway and draw the attention of the Govt.
Lt. Gen Zameer Shah takes charge of Indian Army's 3 CorpsDimapur | September 24, 2005 5:23:46 PM IST Ani
Dimapur, Sept 24 (ANI) : In a major change of guard in the army's Eastern Command, Lieutenant General Zameeruddin Shah took command of 3 Corps headquartered at Rangapahar near Dimapur as its GOC. The outgoing GOC 3 Corps, Lt. Gen. Daljeet Singh, is poised to take charge of the Western Command. Lt.General Shah was commissioned into the 185 Light Regiment on June 9, 1968. Lt. General Shah had served in the region earlier and has vast experience of the region having served in Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh. A defence release said that Shah was a keen sportsman with golf being his favorite game. He is also a wildlife enthusiast. Shah wife,Sabiha Simi Shah will spearhead the Spear Army Welfare Association as its new president. The defence release added that she too shares the Lt. General's love for the Northeast and outdoor activities. (ANI)
All is not well with Naga IRB in Chattisgarh Kuknalim.com
KOHIMA, Sept. 23: The Neiphiu Rio government is facing criticism for sending police personnel from Nagaland to Naxal-infested Chattisgarh without ensuring proper healthcare and accommodation for them. Sources said at least one policeman from the 9 India Reserve Battalion (IRB) of the state police had died after he returned home. Around 70 policemen have returned to Nagaland from Chattisgarh for various reasons. The 9 IRB was sent in June to Barsoor, 450 km from the Chattisgarh capital, Raipur. Recently, the jawans busted a Naxal hideout in deep jungles and killed several of them. However, as one of the jawans said, “We are fighting Naxals along with nature.”
More than 100 IRB jawans are reported to have been admitted to hospitals in that state for various illnesses. While some of them just complained, others threatened to desert the battalion if the state government did not take any action. The jawans alleged that they were not being paid their travel allowance in full. The jawans were reportedly promised Rs 750 as travel allowance but were not paid the amount, the sources added. This is the second allegation by policemen against senior officials for misappropriating TA funds. Last year, personnel of a special Nagaland Armed Police (NAP) battalion deputed in Delhi had made similar complaints against senior officials. Neither an inquiry nor any action has been reported since then. This time round, chief minister Neiphiu Rio is said to have gone into a huddle with his Cabinet colleagues over the matter. However, “no comments” were the only words home minister Thenucho said when asked to comment. (Telegraph)
New GOC for 3 Corps Kohima | September 24, 2005 1:10:30 PM IST Ani
Lieutenant General Zameeruddin Shah has taken over as the General Officer Commanding of the 3 Corps at its headquarters at Rangpahar. Defence sources said here today Lt. Gen. Shah has succeeded Lt. Gen. Daljeet Singh, who will be taking over as the General Officer Commanding of Western Command. Lt. Gen. Shah has had long tenures in the North East having served earlier in Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh. He is a recipient of the Sena Medal and Vishist Seva Medal. UNI AS MS AK VC1145
ULFA hand in Asia arms trade: Home
The Home Ministry has received reports that the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA) is involved in supplying weapons to extremist groups, including the CPI(Maoist). The outfit is known to have bought weapons and explosives from south-east Asia and, in turn, sold them to groups in the North-East. Senior Ministry officials said the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and internal security agencies have pointed to Naxals sourcing weapons from the ULFA.
Security agencies have claimed that Naxals have financially strengthened themselves over the years, adding to their coffers through extortion, their prime targets being contractors and tendu leaf cultivators. Contractors in Andhra Pradesh pay at least five per cent of the contract amount to Naxals as taxes, the Ministry has been told. Besides, ‘‘there are reports to suggest that funds are being laundered through front organisations in the cities that are involved in legitimate business’’, a senior official said. Though the ministry is geared up to carry out police operations against the Naxals in a coordinated manner, there is no move yet to crack down on the front organisations or stop laundering of funds. Ministry estimates say more and more ‘‘dalams’’ now have access to automatic weapons like AK-47 and other personal weapons. While some of these have been looted from the police force, Naxals are increasingly buying weapons too, the report suggests. At the Chief Ministers’ conference on Naxalism, Andhra Chief Minister Y.S.R. Reddy had claimed that Naxals had established contact with outfits abroad. He also said that they were using very sophisticated radio sets that allowed them to listen in on police communication. Worry zones
• Reports point to ULFA buying weapons in SE Asia, selling them to CPI(Maoist)
• More and more Naxalite dalams have access to automatic weapons, including AK-47s
• Andhra CM YSR Reddy had pointed o Naxals buying superior communication equipment allowing tapping of police lines
Unification and Sovereignty of the Nagas Waikhom Damodar Singh E pao news The "Naga Revolt" under the leadership of late Zaphu Phizo was launched in the early 50s under the banner of Naga National Council, a revolutionary party which originated from two simple clubs established in the names of "Naga Club" in the year 1918, one at Kohima and another at Makokching as the "forums" for carrying out social activities for the tribal communities which, later on, had been converted into an organisation known as the Naga Hills District Tribal Council in the year 1945, immediately after the end of the second world war, with the "sole aim" of rendering some autonomy for providing better welfare and development services to the backward natives, the hill tribes of the district. The Naga Hills District then was a district under the erstwhile greater Province of Assam, and it was Charles Pawsay, ICS, the deputy commissioner of the district who established the above Tribal Council as he had great admiration for the local natives and very keen interest for their welfare and development for making them to live as the people of a much better society.
Inspite of the simple objectives that the organisation so had in the beginning for improving the socio-economic conditions of the much backward tribes of the district, it became later on the "hub" of political activities of a group of extremists whose attitudes became more seriously changed as soon as Zaphu Phizo, an Angami Tribe born in Khonoma village near Kohima in the year 1900 (the village was called Thibomei by the Meiteis earlier and was once under the territory of the erstwhile independent State of Manipur till it was taken over by the British from Maharaj Chandrakirti Singh under an appeasing policy and had established there their garrison for the convenience of spreading of their power) joined the party after having lived in Burma from 1933 to 1944 and it was only after he joined the organisation that its name of the Naga Hills District Council had been changed into Naga National Council and that it became a much more active political party highly infused with deep anti-Indian feelings and ideas of living of the Nagas as a separate entity of people.
Thus leaning more towards the "extremism" preferred and induced by the new leader Phizo, the Nagas of the Naga Hills District issued ultimately a very bold declaration in June, 1947 to the effect that the Naga Hills which was administratively a district under the state of Assam should cease to be a part of India when she attains independence. In fact, the anti-Indian attitudes and feelings of the Nagas of the district cast on them due to the high-handed and much inferior treatment done to them by the plains people, particularly of Assam, had already been brewing up since much earlier time and it was on the occasion of the visit of the Simmon Commission in 1929, which had come to India to study the ground for Constitutional reforms as strongly demanded by her people, that a party of Naga delegates openly expressed their strong anti-Indian feelings to them with fervent request to leave them (the Nagas) out from being considered as a part of Indian people. While such were the extreme and hostile feelings and attitudes that were then amongst the Nagas of the Naga Hills District the hill tribes of Manipur, namely the Tangkhuls etc. remained as quite loyal, simple and peaceful subjects of the state under the ruling of the king. During the period between 1947 and 1956, Phizo tried several times to convince the governments both in Assam and Delhi, of the earnestness of the Naga claim of having of their own independent sovereign country-to show genuineness of this, Phizo even conducted, though an unofficial process, an "unilateral plebiscite" by collecting signatures and thumb impressions from house to house from May to August in 1951, and according to it he claimed that over 99% of the people of the Naga Hills District voted for a separate and independent state of their own. However, the then prime minister of India, Shri Jawaharlal Nehru vehemently disapproved the move of the few sections of the Naga radicals headed by Phizo. He declared his disapproval in the Lok Sabha by describing that such a demand of the Nagas of the Naga Hills District is "UNWISE, IMPRACTICABLE AND UNACCEPTABLE".
Thus having no other alternative the Nagas under Phizo proclaimed their "Federal Independent Sovereign Government" as a "de facto Government" on March 22, 1956 according to their own Constitution framed by hoisting the Naga National Flag, bearing red, green and white with great traditional ceremony and feasting performed at Phensinyu village in the Rengma Tribe area, soon followed by wide spread of armed violence on a planned scale resorted to by the heavily armed Nagas of the so called Naga Army who later on came to be known as Naga Hostiles.
In order to check the outburst of the armed revolution or uprising so taken place in an unassuming proportion the Indian Army was immediately called in who appropriately dealt with the armed uprising and the very alarming and critical situation that had flared up was brought under control. The stern action taken by the Indian Army forced many revolutionary Nagas to go underground. Phizo himself escaped out through Mikir Hills and Shylet (erstwhile East Pakistan) and landed in London and lived under the care of one Reverend Michael Scott as an English citizen till he died there. The subversive activities of the Naga Hostiles then spread in alarming proportion over the areas of the hill districts of Manipur, namely Mao, Ukhrul, Tamenglong, Chandel and later on of Assam and Arunachal. However, since the Naga people had undergone many unimaginable hardships and untold sufferings due to the armed uprising, a change in the attitudes of the Naga moderates led by Dr. Imkongliba Ao, P. Shilu Ao, Jassokie Angami etc. soon took place, in that, they preferred to resolve the issue in peaceful manner by immediately giving up the violent activities and their original plan and claim of "seccession from India", and therefore an agreement was arrived at in the larger interest of the Naga people of the Naga Hills Districts. The Government of India therefore granted the Naga Hills Districts to the status of another full-fledged State (the 16th) of the Indian Union which came into existence with effect from 1st December, 1963 as was inaugurated by S. Radhakrishnan, the former President of India with P. Shilu Ao as the first chief minister of the state.
Thus, in due course of time the "flame of insurgency" in Nagaland and the revolutionary spirit and feelings of the majority of her people had died down to some extent but it continued to escalate and burn rather vigorously and on a wider scale affecting large areas of Manipur, Assam and Arunachal States, particularly after the emergence of a new group of Naga insurgents under the name of National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN), who walked out from the NNC organisation pioneered by Phizo as they strongly dissented and firmly opposed the so called Shillong Peace Accord signed in between the Government and the leaders of the pro-Phizo group of the NNC on November 11, 1975. The Shillong peace accord had taken place under the initiative of the then Governor of Assam, Manipur, Nagaland and Tripura combined, Shri Lalan Prassad Singh (LP Singh), a retired ICS officer and formerly Union Home Secretary to the Government of India. The splitted revolutionary group under the name of National Socialist Council of Nagaland was formed in early 1980 with Issak Swu as Chairman, SS Khaplang, A Burmese Homi Naga Tribe and Thuingaleng Muivah, a Tangkhul tribe, born and brought up in Manipur, Ukhrul district (Somdal village) as vice-president and general secretary respectively as a result of decisions taken in a meeting of the Naga National Council faction held in a place in the border area of Burma sometime in 1975 who sternly rejected the Shillong Accord and had defected from the NNC group challenging the further leadership of Phizo and his later on diverted policy. However disentive feelings started brewing up soon amongst the top leaders of the factional party on the ground that Issak Swu and Muivah were planning to start negotiations for a dialogue with the Government of India within the framework of the Indian Constitution by ousting Khaplang who was surely to oppose the move - it was on this highly suspected ground that a large column of Khaplang's men attacked Muivah's group, killing nearly 150 of them in a "dawn raid" launched in a place in the Nagaland-Burma border area - this incident led to a split of the party of the National Socialist Council of Nagaland into two organisations, one known as NSCN(K) group, and another as NSCN(IM) group. Before the spilt it was believed that the desires of Issak Swu and Thuingalen Muivah were only a rumour but the reality of their secret move had subsequently been proved correct as they had met later on the Prime Minister of India, namely, PV Narashimha Rao, first in Paris and later on in New York in 1995, HD Deve Gowda in Zurich in February 1997, Atal Behari Vajpayee in Tokyo in 2002, and they had since been carrying out the so called "Indo-Naga Peace Talks" saying that the process so taken up by both sides aims to keep a permanent "PEACE" in Nagaland and its adjoining States of Manipur, Assam and Arunachal.
So far so good, well done! one would say most heartily to the NSCN(IM) group for their coming to good senses now, particularly to Muivah for his initiatives taken in this regard as the general secretary of the organisation showing now all the good gestures though a pretty good time have been wasted during which heavy bloodshed and loss of many precious lives had occurred. But what is not fully appreciated is about their rather "reversed" or "diverted" move coloured with more "communal tinge" with which they are very arrogantly pressing the Government of India for building up a "domain" for a people of very much heterogeneous "conglomeration" under the coverage of rather a very superficial and unnatural "appellation" of very recent origin called "Nagas".
Their move for "unification" of the different heterogenous groups of hill tribes inhabiting in Manipur, Assam and Arunachal states who speak different dialects of their own and are really of non-congruous groups for the purpose of creation of a greater Nagaland state, be it within the embit of the Indian Union or outside it, may be considered surely to be a futile attempt to make or to work out the arithmetic "two into or plus two to FIVE" which is something not possible at all to work out. So also their demand of sovereignty of Nagaland as an independent country of its own is considered to be something which is not feasible at all from all points of view, particularly from the financial point of view unless it is funded by some International sources which appears again something not at all thinkable, and therefore it is in the context of the above candid reasons that both the aspects of their demand have been "rejected outright" by the Government of India though they are still very vehemently and threateningly insisting for a quick finalisation of the matter saying that the claim of the Naga people is their "birth right" which cannot be denied at all by any force under the sun. It has been said very loudly in the recent Naga rally held at Kohima public ground on 31st August that "unification" of the Nagas is very much permissible under the Constitution of Indian - while all will say "yes to it" provided the move is within its framework still one would like to point out very frankly of the fact that the Constitution of India does not at all provide any "room" for effecting "redrawing of the boundaries of her states" merely based on "communal" or "secular" grounds, what it provides is only for "reorganisation of the areas" of two or more states to be done purely on the basis of "administrative convenience" as had been done very recently in cases of some of the states like Uttaranchal, Jharkhand etc., and that too purely on the "mutual agreements" of the states concerned. Such being the condition mandatorily laid down then does not "unification of the Nagas" inhabiting in Nagaland, Manipur, Assam and Arunachal states for the purpose of bringing them under one administrative unit as is persistently demanded for require the "mutual agreements" of all the above state governments who will be involved in the process? - to answer the question one will certainly say a "big YES" again as the agreements to be arrived at only in between the Government of India, the NSCN(IM) group and a few of their supporters - the Hohos, the NGO groups and the students' organisations etc. will not at all fulfill the constitutional requirements highlighted as above.
In any case it has been opined by many legal experts that the redrawing of the age-old "territory" or "boundary" of the state of Manipur, at least, cannot be touched by the normal provisions contained in Article 3 of the Constitution of India unless the same is consented by the "majority of her people" which numbers more than some 18 lakhs out of the total population of some 23 lakhs i.e. even if it is hypothetically accepted or assumed that all the non-Kuki hill tribes of the state opt in favour of the move of unification their number cannot exceed at all to go beyond, say, even six lakhs - perhaps this is the point based on which the honourable Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh very thoughtfully had said firmly that disintegration of the boundary of Manipur cannot be done without the due consent of the majority of the people of the state, and also as had already been said earlier by former Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee during his visit of Kohima in October, 2003 - the Prime Minister had said clearly before a large gathering of a public meeting held at the State capital that integration of Naga inhabited areas could be achieved only if there is "consensus" among the "states".
Lastly, it may be pointed out that, as of latest, the NSCN(IM) general secretary, Th. Muivah has reiterated in the 5th Naga people's consultative meeting held at Royal Rose Bangkhapi in Bangkok on Tuesday, 6th September that a "solution to the Naga issue cannot be acceptable under the constitution of India or within its Union" though he has hinted that it is acceptable to the outfit a "federation of India and Nagalim" of a much bigger territory outside the ambit of the Indian Union. If this is the clear and firm stand of the outfit then where is the question of disintegration of the areas of the Naga inhabited areas of the states of Manipur, Assam and Arunachal within the provisions of the Constitution of India ? Rather their stand, it seems is still sticking to the same original plan i.e. "cessation from the Indian Union" and to exist as a separate independent country of its own as a "defacto right" which cannot be effected at all or allowed to be claimed as their is no provision in the Constitution of India permitting to do so unlike of the Constitution of Russia etc. It is in the context of the above highlighted facts that the Government of India, perhaps, remained absolutely adamant to oblige the NSCN(IM) with their hard pressing demand of "unification and sovereignty of the Nagas" though they (the Government of India) are prepared to go out of their way to grant greater autonomy to the Nagas within the ambit of the Indian Union giving the state hold over all matters except defence, external affairs, currency and communication and also in having its own flag, new nomenclature of the Assembly as "Tatar Hoho", ministers being called as "kilonsers" and a separate constitution of their own "within" the country's existing constitution as a very special case which is something that cannot be found any where in the world - such are the unique specialities that the Government of India has quite agreed to accede to the Nagas who, actually, have been offered "more than" what they normally require to have - this is the strong contention of the Government of India.
Indo-Myanmar high-level officials meeting today From Sobhapati Samom Assam tribune
IMPHAL, Sept 23 – To discuss the ongoing border dispute along the Indo-Myanmar border, a high-level meeting of Indian and Myanmar officials will be held at Moreh, a commercial Indian border town tomorrow. Sources from the border town said that the two-day director’s level meeting of the two countries will be attended by border survey teams. A ten-member Indian team who came all the way from New Delhi had already reached Moreh on Thursday. The Deputy Commissioner of Chandel district bordering Myanmar will also attend the meeting. The Indian officials particularly those under the office of Additional Deputy Commissioner of Chandel district are busy in arranging the food and lodging of the delegates from two neighbouring countries.
The meeting is likely to settle some of the border-related cases like the frequent encroachment of Indian territory by the Myanmarese authority as well as the replacement of some border pillars which were destroyed or reported missing in the past. Some of the border pillars including pillar No. 66 and 87 which were erected way back in 1969-70 are reportedly destroyed by Myanmarese troops in the recent past. Besides, the report of handing over Tuito bridge at Molcham area and Tuibung bridge at New Somtal area both in Chandel district of the region of Manipur state are also expected to be one among the agenda of the meeting. The two bridges are constructed by the Britishers during the World War II. Border area village chiefs association, representing over 60 villages have been demanding reviewal of the government decision without delay. Molcham village located in Chandel district’s southeastern frontier is reached via Chakpikarong and Mobi villages on Sugunu-Chakpikarong route in Indian border state Manipur.
Court releases student leader, agitation continues From Our Correspondent Assam tribune
TURA, Sept 23 – In a development that could have serious repercussions on the Meghalaya Government by the Shillong Bench of the Gauhati High Court which had imposed a ban on bandhs and all forms of agitations in this State, a subdivisional court has released a senior Garo Students’ Union leader on Thursday shortly after the latter’s arrest. The High Court had imposed a ban on all agitational programmes in Meghalaya and had directed the State Government to deal firmly with agitationists. The court went further by making the Chief Secretary and the DGP of the state responsible should the agitation create an impact on the normal functioning of everyday life. The High Court has been monitoring the day to day events taking place in the three districts of Garo Hills ever since the GSU-sponsored ‘Non-Cooperation Movement’ began on September 14. On Friday, the agitation completed seven days and continues to create a virtual economic blockade. All shops and business establishments are still closed from 5 am to 5 pm and already there is a shortage of essential commodities in Tura and other district towns. Attendance in Government offices fluctuated between normal to low.
On Thursday the Northern Zone vice-president of the GSU, Siljrang G Momin, along with another student union member were arrested by East Garo Hills police from Mendipather market. The two were taken to the subdivisional magistrate of Resubelpara, WP Marak, who granted both of them bail on the same day, much to the astonishment and uneasiness of the police which have been given the task of rounding up the student leaders. While Friday was by and large trouble free, there were problems on Thursday when agitated women protestors barged into the East Garo Hills Deputy Commissioner’s office in Williamnagar demanding the release of two students who had been arrested on Monday from the town. Little did they know that the two students had already been granted bail in the morning. The women protestors were later informed by the district officials about it and asked to disperse. To prevent a repeat of the episode, the Mahila unit of the CRPF has been deployed in Williamnagar.
Meanwhile, the Garo Students Union has threatened to further intensify its agitation against the state government following the Meghalaya Government’s decision to promulgate the ordinance on MBoSE. The Meghalaya Governor M M Jacob had alreadfy given his approval to the same on Tuesday. GSU president Andreas T Sangma informed newspersons at Tura on Thursday that the government must withdraw the ordinance and delimit the proposed powers for the MBoSE office at Shillong.