TODAY -

Violence marks 24 hour ATCF hill bandh, 20 houses damaged, Imp-Ukhrul road bandh on
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, April 30 2015 : The Youth Progressive Club, Gwaltabi has called an Imphal-Ukhrul road indefinite bandh following a flare-up between two communities resulting in the destruction of at least 20 houses following a misunderstanding arising out of the All Tribal Chiefs Forum's bandh in Gwaltabi area, Imphal East today.

Reports culled from Gwaltabi said that tension erupted in the area when ATCF bandh supporters, who enforced the bandh at Gwaltabi, were told to take their activity at other places.

Police later dispersed the bandh supporters and reportedly arrested some supporters from the site.

Later in the evening, enraged by the news of the arrest of bandh supporters by the police, some groups of people went to Gwaltabi and destroyed at least 20 houses besides causing destruction to some vehicles.

The situation was put under control by the police when it took an ugly turn.



A partially vandalised shop in the violence during the ATCF bandh
A partially vandalised shop in the violence during the ATCF bandh


At the same time, the police said that the persons were not arrested but taken for treatment.

Bandh supporters also destroyed two vehicles at Mongneljang village along Imphal-Ukhrul road near Yaingangpokpi village in Senapati district today.

Police also took two bandh supporters into their custody.

The two vehicles destroyed by the bandh supporters included a passenger vehicle plying to and fro Gwaltabi-Imphal and a scooter.

Police personnel led by SDPO of Lamlai PS and OC of Yaingangpokpi PS dispersed the bandh supporters.

Meanwhile, vice-president of AMUCO , Ph Devan Sharma has strongly condemned the violent incident at Gwaltabi today.

He appealed to all concerned to maintain calm while urging the Govt to intervene and keep the issue under control.

He also said that the incident occurred due to lack of alertness of the Govt security agencies while adding that incident could have been aborted had the security agencies maintained vigil.

The bandh affected normal life in the hill districts even as it turned violent in Senapati district.

Vehicular movement in Chandel district including Imphal-Moreh section of NH-102 was paralysed due to the ATCF's bandh.

The 48-hour Naga areas bandh imposed by UNC ended only last midnight.

It was succeeded by the chiefs' bandh.

The ATCF has been protesting the routing of MGNREGS fund through the State's account.

They bemoaned that the fund has been dislocated, misappropriated and delayed since the fund was routed through the State account which has forced the beneficiaries to lose all the benefits except a trifling appeasement payment of 20/25 per cent in piecemeal.

Since early morning, the bandh supporters most of whom are village chiefs blocked the Imphal-Moreh section of NH 102 at Molnoi village and Chandel district headquarters road at Liwa Changning and Chandel DC Lamkhai by stacking woods along the roads.

However, vehicles carrying patients, religious related services and emergency services were exempted and given free passage.

Chandel district headquarters wore a deserted look as vehicles stayed off the road and all shops including other commercial establishments downed shutters.

Government offices located in the district headquarter also recorded low attendance due to the general strike.

Briefing media persons, Th Guite, vice-president, ATCF Chandel appealed to the State Government to implement the scheme through District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) as before.

He also warned that the chiefs' forum will intensify its agitation if the State Government fails to consider and fulfil the demand.

The bandh passed off peacefully in Sadar Hills.

All shops at Kangpokpi remained closed for the day.

Vehicles stayed off the road.

Similar situation was witnessed at Kalapahar, Sapormeina, Motbung and Gamgiphai villages.

Though Govt offices at Kangpokpi remained opened, staff turn out was very low due to the bandh.

It has been reported that a number of ATCF (M) bandh volunteers blocked the National Highway at Gamgiphai while some bandh volunteers also enforced the bandh at Motbung, Sapormeina, Keithelmanbi and Kangpokpi.

However, no untoward incident has been reported till the time of filing this report.


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