Police, protesters clash in city

By Our Reporter

SHILLONG: Clash between the police and the agitating members of the Association of Qualified Grade IV Association-2011, East Khasi Hills over the latter’s appointment, resulted in injury to some members at the parking lot near the Additional Secretariat on Tuesday.

Police and district administration said they had to detain as many as 83 agitators after they did not seek permission to carry out the protest. Section 144 CrPC had already been imposed by the district administration prohibiting agitations near the Secretariat.

Detained protestors were rounded up in a bus and taken to Mawngap police station on the outskirts of the city.

After some women protestors resisted the attempt of the police to take them in a bus, they were dragged by the women police personnel.

Later on Tuesday night, after the detained persons were released, the agitating members decided to call off their protest on the request of Additional Deputy Magistrate DM Wahlang.

A five-member delegation of the Association will meet Deputy Commissioner Sanjay Goyal on Wednesday at 10 am.

Earlier, during the scuffle, two people – Trikshon Nongkynrih, a member of the Association and CSWO general secretary Christabel Wanniang – were injured.

It has been informed that Nongkynrih suffered serious injury on his spine after he was allegedly assaulted by Sadar Police Station officer in charge D Nongpluh.

The young man was assaulted inside the bus which was carrying the agitators from the parking lot here to Mawngap police station.

According to eye-witnesses, Nongpluh displayed an aggressive attitude by trying to assault everyone inside the bus.

Nongpluh first forcefully pushed Nongkynrih and then assaulted him, an eye-witness said.

Nongpluh even threatened the young man that he would assault him if he saw him outside, the eye-witness said.

Despite Diengdoh’s injury, police initially refused to stop the bus. But after members shouted the police were compelled to stop the bus. Diengdoh was taken to Shillong Civil Hospital with the help of FKJGP members.

The protestors also alleged that Nongpluh even kicked CSWO general secretary Wanniang while she was pulled by the women police personnel. Wanniang was also admitted at Shillong Civil Hospital.

“We have been running from pillar to post requesting the Government to extend the period of the merit list. But the Government remains adamant to comply with our demand,” the agitating members said while speaking to reporters at Mawngap police station.

The agitators resorted to hunger strike at Mawngap police station in protest against the apathy of the Government.

“The Government is complying with the demands of a militant outfit like the ANVC. It means that we also have to take up arms to see that our demand is fulfilled,” said the agitating members.

East Khasi Hills SP M Kharkrang clarified that the police did not use any force against those agitators who complied with the request to board the bus.

He said the agitators were given one and half hours to disperse by the Magistrate and the police had to use some amount of force against those agitators who were not willing to go inside the buses which were parked nearby.

“We had requested them to disperse peacefully but since they did not respond, we had to use a little force,” Kharkrang said.

It is learnt that Irene Hujon (CSWO) entered into a verbal duel with police women and this compelled the police to react.

The aggrieved candidates, who are yet to be absorbed, have been agitating demanding appointment from the government.

East Khasi Hills Deputy Commissioner Sanjay Goyal said that the agitators had not taken any permission to hold the protest.

“Section 144 CrPC has also been imposed within 500 meters of the Main Secretariat,” Goyal said.

Meanwhile, KHNAM condemned the police action meted out on members of the Association of Qualified Grade-IV, 2011.

Terming the police action as ‘unjustified and highly uncalled for’, the KHNAM also questioned the indecisiveness of the government in absorbing all the successful candidates.

Condemning the State Government for neglecting the demands of the successful candidates, KHNAM came down heavily on the Mukul Sangma-led government saying, “If the ANVC, which is a militant group, can be called for dialogue and their demands fulfilled, why does the government not apply the same formula to the unemployed youths who had successfully passed the examinations and qualified for getting the appointment.”

“If the government feels that it cannot appoint them, why did it declare the names of 331 successful candidates in the merit list,” KHNAM president Pyndapborthiaw Saiborne said.

Saiborne also met the agitating candidates who were forcefully taken to Mawngap police station from the venue of their agitation.

The KHNAM also demanded extension of the validity of the result for another six months as was being recommended by the secretary of the District Selection Committee (DSC).

The KSU Mawkhar Circle has also condemned the police action.

“We urge upon the Government to extend the merit list of the successful candidates,” KSU Mawkhar Circle member George M Wanniang said while adding that the Union would also support the ongoing indefinite hunger strike.

Hynniewtrep National People’s Front (HNPF) has also condemned the assault on the CSWO general secretary and the Grade IV Association member by Sadar officer in charge Nongpluh.

It was reported that initially the sit-in protest was peaceful, but as soon as Irene Hujon and her follower Christabel Wanniang came and joined the protest, it turned awry.

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