From SHDDC to UNC, arson spree continues on National Highways
10 hurt in scuffle with cops, Sumos burnt
Source: The Sangai Express
Imphal, November 04 2011:
The United Naga Council (UNC) sponsored three days bandh turned violent on the first day today.
At least 10 persons, mostly women bandh supporters, have been wounded while engaging in a scuffle with security forces at Noney along National Highway-37 in Tamenglong district after three vehicles were set on fire by the agitators, today morning.
The incident took place around 11.30 am today when volunteers of United Naga Council (UNC) and All Naga Sudents' Association, Manipur (ANSAM), enforcing a 72-hour total bandh across Naga areas in Manipur, protesting against a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the State government and Sadar Hills Districthood Demand Committee (SHDDC), set ablaze two goods loaded vehicles and another vehicle belonging to State police commando personnel, who were escorting goods loaded vehicles on the National Highway.
The police commandos were proceeding towards Noney to receive a bullet proof vehicle and CISF personnel who were deputed to Tamenglong district headquarters during the visit of the Union Home Minister and Chief Minister there on November 3 .
As the commandos approached Noney they were confronted by the blockade supporters and in a short moment a large crowd gathered at the scene, prompting the police to fire tear gas shells to disperse them.
At least 10 people were injured in the police action, prompting the police to fire tear gas shells to disperse them.
At least 10 people were injured in the police action, sources said.
Sources said the security team led by SDPOs of Imphal West and Imphal East were heading towards Imphal with six goods loaded vehicles, which had been stranded at a CRPF camp in Awangkhul on the highway about 20 kms from Noney this morning when bandh supporters stopped them at a place between Awangkhul and Langkhong and set on fire three vehicles, including one belonging to the security personnel.
It is also reported that the vehicles, two Tata Sumo vehicles, were loaded with betel leaves.
A public meeting was held at Noney minutes after the incident which the agitators termed as a direct assault on the Naga people.
They said the police resorted to lathi charge and fired more than a thousand rounds of tear gas shells, including live rounds and added that around 30 empty cases of sophisticated weapons were found.
They also alleged five houses nearby were damaged in the firing and four stationary vehicles were also hit by bullets.
The agitation, which was started from last midnight, was launched by ANSAM and UNC barely four days after a MoU was signed between the State government and Sadar Hills Disricthood Demand Committee (SHDDC) which suspended its 92-daylong economic blockade stir on October 31 .
The furore over the agreement is largely because of the apprehension that the government is likely to concede the demand for Sadar Hills district formation.
The Naga organisations are stoutly opposing the move, saying Naga areas in Sadar Hills should not be curved out to create Sadar Hills district.