Five vehicles torched by SHDDC supporters
Source: Hueiyen News Service / Newmai News Network
Imphal, August 03 2011:
Even as the demand for Sadar Hill district has been scaled up from a 7-day economic blockade that began July 31 midnight to an indefinite general strike beginning Wednesday, five vehicles were torched by blockade supporters at several places on National Highways 39 and 53 .
The first incident occurred at about 4 am at Keithelmanbi on National Highway 39.An I-20 Hyundai car bearing registration no AS 02G-4470, owned by a commandant of 34th CRPF battalion was torched by blockade supporters at Keithelmanbi cemetery as the car approached Imphal from Dimapur unaware of the general strike which was declared the previous night.
The second incident took place in front of ADC office at Kangpokpi when a lone loaded freight truck (AS 03 AC/1355) that was coming towards Imphal along with an Assam Rifles convoy of vehicles was stopped and torched by blockade supporters.
In the third incident, a Bajaj Pulsar, unregistered, was set afire by blockade supporters at about 12:30 pm at Leikot village on National Highway 39. In the third incident a loaded freight truck (NL 08A/2444) that was approaching Imphal with 43 AR vehicles was stopped and torched by blockade supporters around 3:20 pm at Kangpokpi bazar barely 150 meters away from Kangpokpi police station.
A private ambulance and a private Maruti van also came under heavy attack from the blockade supporters around 9 am today near the Kangpokpi PS.
On National Highway 53 linking Imphal with Jiribam, there are reports that at least five persons sustained injuries of which one is said to be in critical condition.
One empty freight truck headed to Jiribam was also set afire by blockade supporters while two others met an accident after blockade supporters rained down stones on them on National Highway 53 .
It has also been reported that today at about 7:40 pm a team of police commandos went to Bijang and Longjang villages and fired several rounds before rescuing the wife of Bijang chief who had been severely beaten.
Later, the team picked up three alleged blockade supporters namely Tongminthang Tuboi, Tangminlun, Momoi from New Keithelmanbi.
In the meanwhile, the dead bodies of two blockade supporters who died yesterday when an oil tanker lost control and swerved before running them down at Kaglatongbi were today brought to the office of Additional Deputy Commissioner (ADC) at Kangpokpi.
In the presence of the dead bodies, Sadar Hill Districthood Demand Committee (SHDDC) president Ngamkhohao Haokip submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister of India and Chief Minister of Manipur through the ADC, H Rupachandra.
Speaking to the media, president of SHDDC Ngamkhohao Haokip noted that the incidents that happened today was totally unexpected and said that the state government was solely responsible for such unforeseen eventualities.
"Two blockade supporters and an innocent student was killed yesterday all because of the government's use of mindless force to quell and suppress the demand for Sadar Hill district," he said.
Condemning a statement of Chief Minister O Ibobi made yesterday at a press conference, Haokip said it was unacceptable that Sadar Hill district should be created along with other such demands in the state.
"Sadar Hill issue and the demand for a full fledged district go back 39 years," he said.
The Government of Manipur is only provoking the people of Sadar Hills with its use of mindless force; he said and added that the genuine right of the people is being denied b y the government.
The Government of Manipur will be solely responsible for whatever happens in the foreseeable future, he said appealing to the CM and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to intervene in solving the long pending Sadar Hills issue.
Thousands of supporters gathered at the ADC office in Kangpokpi and took out a mass rally bearing the two dead bodies of blockade victim.
They shouted slogans like "long live Sadar Hills" .
Meanwhile, ten inter-state passenger buses and 20 loaded freight trucks bound for Imphal are reportedly stranded at Senapati awaiting security escort.