Friday, August 6, 2010

Naga council begins Manipur blockade

The United Naga Council of Manipur has resumed the economic blockade on Manipur on Wednesday for 20 days, despite the central and state governments' appeal to call it off in public interest. The Centre said in New Delhi that it had urged the group not to block supply of essential commodities to the state.Home Minister P Chidambaram said in the Rajya Sabha: "Manipur chief minister recently called a meeting of all the groups, but the UNC did not attend the meeting."On the first day of the blockade, no untoward incident was reported on the state's lifelines — the Imphal-Dimapur-Guwahati highway and the Imphal-Jiribam-Silchar highway."We've deployed eight CRPF companies along the Senapati-to-Mao sector (a 50-km-stretch) of National Highway 39," Senapati SP Nishit Ujjwal said.He said, "Another CRPF team, escorting 48 empty oil tankers, left the state to ferry fuel from outside."The Nagaland police on the Nagaland-Manipur border also confirmed the movement of the tankers, while more than 200 goods-laden trucks were on their way to Imphal.Manipur witnessed the end of a crippling 68-day-long blockade of the Imphal-Dimapur-Guwahati highway and Imphal-Jiribam-Silchar highway, called by the All-Naga Students Association, Manipur, on June 18.The UNC announced the resumption of blockade in protest against the Centre's alleged inaction on their ultimatum to PM Manmohan Singh on July 27.The demand included institution of a judicial enquiry into the May 6 firing at Mao Gate on the Manipur-Nagaland border, killing two Naga students, demilitarisation of Naga areas, removal of the "wanted" tags on Naga leaders and dissolution of the autonomous district councils.


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