Monday, March 4, 2024

Groups want Assam shooters to be tried in Meghalaya


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SHILLONG, Nov 24: The Khasi Students’ Union (KSU) and four other pressure groups on Thursday demanded that the Assam police and forest personnel responsible for killing five villagers at Mukroh should be tried by the Meghalaya government.
The other organisations are the Federation of Khasi, Jaintia and Garo People (FKJGP), Hynniewtrep Youth National Front (HYNF), Jaintia Students’ Union (JSU) and Ri-Bhoi Youth Federation (RBYF).
Speaking during the sit-in protest in solidarity with the victims of the Mukroh shooting at the Civil Hospital junction, KSU general secretary Donald V Thabah said the Assam government should hand over its police personnel and forest guards who fired at the Meghalaya villagers unprovoked early November 22 morning.
“The Meghalaya government should punish those responsible for the death of the five innocent people as per the provisions of the law,” Thabah said.
Thabah wondered by the Meghalaya government does not deploy its special forces such as SF-10 and Special Operation Team, created to fight militancy, along the border with Assam to protect the Khasi population.
It is the duty of the state government to ensure the safety and security of the people residing along the border, he said, suggesting the setting up of a special border police unit for the job.
Echoing Thabah, FKJGP president Dundee Cliff Khongsit said the border firing incident would not have happened had the state government deployed adequate forces at Mukroh. “Police stations and police outposts should be set up within 1 km of all the sensitive border points,” he added.
JSU leader Treibor Raul Suchen advocated the boycott of the upcoming Assembly polls if the state government fails to take steps to ensure the safety and security of the people residing in villages along the boundary with Assam. “We had asked Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma to set up a police battalion at Mukroh as more than 12,000 Khasi people live in the border villages under Block-I,” he said.
Block-I is one of the six disputed sectors on the Assam-Meghalaya border awaiting resolution.
Suchen also said the people of Mukroh have often experienced harassment and atrocities from the Assam police.
HNYF president Sadon K Blah and RBYF chief Bipul Thangkhiew also spoke during the sit-in protest.
A candlelight vigil was carried out after the sit-in, where scores of members of various pressure groups, including the Naga Students’ Union Shillong, participated.


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