JOWAI: Elders of Nongkhlieh Elaka including Pyrkhat Pajuh, Embok Pajuh, Karlin Rupon and Jame Sukhlian lodged an FIR at Saipung Police Station against MDC aspirant Begin Paslein of Samasi for allegedly stealing coal and assaulting labourers at Madan Briwar – the famous coal mining area in East Jaintia Hills District.
As per the FIR, Begin Paslein along with his Personal Security Officer (PSO) provided by the State Government through the Police Department, accompanied by surrendered HNLC men armed with carbine and other deadly weapons such as guns, pistols and SBBL arrived at Madan Briwar on Tuesday and forcibly took away five trucks of coal belonging to the people of Nongkhlieh Elaka.
“At the time of the incident there were only four personnel of the Third MLP Battalion camping at Briwar Temporary Camp since the rest had been sent for duty in different parts of the district on Election duty,” a reliable source said.
“We informed a senior police officer of the incident and immediately more than 20 personnel arrived and chased them. While chasing them, police was able to overtake one Gypsy and one Tata Sumo while two other Gypsy fled away.
Begin Paslein, the PSO and also the armed group which accompanied Paslein were detained by the Battalion at their Briwar Camp.
They were released only after the Officer In-charge arrived on the spot.
According to Police, Begin produced a Court Order claiming ownership of the coal mine, which was however, found invalid, whereas the elders of Nongkhlieh Elaka produced original documents and some land owners even produced land document dating back to the 1970s.
“Begin Paslein is just an Independent candidate for the JHADC elections. For unknown reasons, the Meghalaya Police have provided him with a personnel body guard (PSO) to protect his life from alleged threat. However, Paslein took advantage since the PSO was armed with a gun,” elders of the Elaka Nongkhlieh complained.
“We request the Police Department to arrest the people mentioned in the FIR and book them in accordance with the law,” they said.
The complainants informed that they have a recently issued court order restraining Begin Paslein from entering into Madan Briwar mining area.
Paslein, however, countered that he also possesses documents to prove that he was the rightful owner of the mineral-rich land at Briwar.
It is noteworthy that Paslein is a contender for the MDC seat from Sumer Constituency as an Independent candidate.