Protests hit life in Manipur

August 21st, 2011 - 7:54 pm ICT by IANS  

P. Chidambaram Imphal, Aug 21 (IANS) Normal life was hit in many areas of Manipur Sunday due to demonstrations demanding the creation of a Naga-dominated district in the state.

According to a government official, the United Naga Council (UNC), the apex body of Nagas in the state, called a shutdown in all Naga inhabited areas in northern Manipur from Sunday, demanding that these areas should not be carved out without their consent.

The UNC has also imposed economic blockades on three national highways, preventing movement of vehicles along these routes, the lifeline for the mountainous state.

Manipur depends on supplies from outside and trucks carrying essentials and other goods from the rest of India use the highways passing through Nagaland and Assam.

The UNC’s shutdown call came as the Sadar Hills District Demand Committee’s (SHDDC) agitation for upgrading Sadar Hills subdivision in the Naga-dominated Senapati district into a full-fledged district entered the 21st day Sunday, an official told reporters.

The SHDDC had also imposed an indefinite economic blockade on the national highways.

The official said the blockades have created a shortage of essential commodities including diesel and petrol.

Manipur’s Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution N. Biren Singh told reporters that the government has been trying to move essentials and fuel through trucks with security escorts.

“Over a hundred trucks loaded with essentials and oil tankers are on the way to Imphal,” the minister added.

The functioning of the Imphal bench of the Gauhati High Court and lower courts has been severely hit for the past four days after the High Court Bar Association suspended work due to the acute scarcity of fuel.

Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh met union Home Minister P. Chidambaram in New Delhi Saturday and discussed the situation.

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