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CM, others condemn violence
SHILLONG: Chief Minister Conrad Sangma has condemned the attack on young basketball players in Lawsohtun on Friday.
In a twitter message on Saturday, he said, “I strongly condemn the assault on 5 boys yesterday in Lawsohtun, Shillong. An assault on any citizen of the state irrespective of background or community will not be tolerated. Perpetrators of such heinous crimes will be charged by law. Action will be taken.”
The assault has also evoked reactions from the public.
President State BJP Earnest Mawrie in a statement condemned the incident and observed that the State Government was duty bound to nab the culprits.
He urged the police to take stringent action against people who took law into their own hands.
Mawrie also appealed to the people not to violate the Covid protocols.
The CSWO also condemned the assault.
“Such acts of violence should not be encouraged in a civil society and the CSWO strongly urge the police to arrest all the perpetrators of the crime. The government should speed up cases of violence so that justice is delivered”, the CSWO president Agnes Kharshiing said.
Some of the right thinking people and opinion makers of the State like Toki Blah, HH Mohrmen, RG Lyngdoh have voiced their concerns over the incident of violent attack at Lawsohtun.
Mohrmen observed that ”no one should take the law in their hands,” while Toki Blah was more categorical in saying”
the police should swing into action immediately and apprehend the attackers whoever they might be. A thorough police investigation is called for in this matter.
Former Home Minister RG Lyngdoh said attempts to create platforms for building bridges between all communities in Shillong have been tried repeatedly but have fizzled out. It appears that the non-tribals prefer to live with the victimhood syndrome; to retreat inside their cocoons and hit back only when such incidents such as the one on Friday happen, rather than work assiduously at addressing the reasons for the breakdown of human relations.”
Lyngdoh who has never been known to mince his words also asked raised some uncomfortable questions. He says, “How do we deal with the anonymity of the perpetrators? How do we deal with the grassroots administration under whose watch the incident occurred? Is the authority and the responsibilities of the grassroots administration put in place to avert such incidents from recurring? What is the protocol to be followed by the police and by the Dorbar when such incidents occur? What is the role to be played by different civil society organisations? How do we encourage victims to come forward and seek justice? How do we discourage communal chauvinism? These are just some of the questions that need to be answered before long-term solutions can be found,” Lyngdoh added.
Advocate, Samujjwal Dey, while condemning the “inhuman assault”, said that the incident where young boys were mercilessly attacked and thrashed reminds people of the years of abuse, neglect, discrimination and injustice faced by certain section of the residents in Meghalaya.
The advocate observed that the lives of all communities, including Bengalis, Nepalis, Biharis, Khasis or Garos were equally important and there has to be a realisation that eventually “all lives matter”. “If we say no to racist remarks made against the northeastern students in mainland India, then we must say no to the racist discrimination in Meghalaya,” he said.
An elderly resident of Upper Laban, Hirak Chakraborty felt that “if there was any opposition to playing in the basketball court, then they should have been told politely instead of indulging in this kind of unprovoked and brutal attack”.
A resident of Bishnupur, Tapan Paul, said that the incident looks like pre-meditated and the culprits should be booked and punished for their violent acts.