Sunday, June 23, 2024
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CM issues travel advisory to VIPs

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By Our Reporter

SHILLONG: Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma has issued a virtual travel advisory for VIPs and eminent personalities visiting Garo Hills asking them to seek security cover from the district administration before their visits.

“It is imperative on the part of the personalities who happen to hold high positions to coordinate their movements with district administration and the need to move with security covers,” Dr Sangma told reporters after chairing a Cabinet meet here on Wednesday.

The Chief Minister said this when his attention was drawn to the recent attack on Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) working president Deborah Marak in East Garo Hills.

Heavily armed ANVC-B militants surrounded Marak and fired in the air during the prize distribution function after the final match of a football tournament at Rongbinggre on Saturday afternoon. Marak sustained injuries on her legs and knees as she fell down while running for her life.

It may be mentioned that though security was provided to Marak, she did not ask the SOT personnel to accompany her on that fateful day.

“Several steps have been taken by the government in this regard,” Dr Sangma said adding that necessary instructions were given to assess the security needs of various VIPs including individuals receiving threats.

He said, “This will apply for all and government does not have any specific coverage but such decision will be based on threat perception of an individual.”

The issuance of travel advisory assumes significance as the candidates for the ensuing 2013 elections are campaigning in the interior villages of the state even as the Chief Minister admitted that militants are trying to get themselves involved in the electioneering process which is due in less than four months.

While making it clear that the State Government wants to have a free and fair elections in the state, Dr Sangma said, “There is a tendency to mess up the election process and necessary steps are being taken in this regard.”

Referring to demands of the ANVC, the Chief Minister said his government is at an advanced stage of preparation of the draft agreement with the rebel outfit and added that “once the agreement is ready, even the splinter group can take advantage of it.”

The Chief Minister maintained that his government is looking for a lasting peace in the state instead of looking for shortcut methods.

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