Public support for Ardent palpable

SHILLONG, May 25: Political leaders and citizens converged at the parking lot near the Additional Secretariat, the venue of the hunger strike of VPP chief Ardent Miller Basaiawmoit, on Thursday to extend their support and to make the state government pay heed to the growing demand for a review of the job reservation policy.
Prominent among those who visited the venue was UDP general secretary Jemino Mawthoh.
Scores of citizens and VPP supporters also gathered at the venue, albeit in batches, to offer their support to the firebrand VPP supremo on the third day of his indefinite hunger strike. Some sat silently; some were engaged in a chit-chat, while others offered prayers.
Some queued up to climb the stairs of the raised platform, met the leaders, exchanged greetings and offered a quick word of support and moved away, making room for others.
As dusk descended, the crowd started to swell as more people arrived at the venue.
“We are here to support Bah Ardent and the VPP…they are sacrificing and doing fasting for us and we are here to show our support….we just want equal opportunity,” said Seida Syiemlieh from Mawlai.
Baggio Muktieh, in his 20s, said he came to support his leader. “The job reservation policy is not balanced and it should be reviewed,” he demanded.
Another young lady, R Lyngdoh said, “We came to support Bah Ardent. I feel like this is for our future and that of our kids. There should be equality and the old reservation policy should be changed. I would like to request the government to listen to the voice of the public.”
Kemboklin Nongrang said that he came to extend his support to their leader who is striving for a better future for the youth. He spoke on the need for the reservation policy to be changed. “The government should listen to us because it is the voice of the public. The government should not be in denial mode,” he added.
“We came to support Bah Ardent as we understand him and he understands us as well. We want to support him…he is a good man and ready to fight for his people. So we came to fight together with him…we hope that his hunger strike will be a success,” said Christmas Sutnga, who had come to the venue with a group of her friends.

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