Assam withdraws travel curbs, but border still tense

Series of protests in Shillong

Guwahati: Amid the heavy security deployment, the state administration on Sunday lifted the travel restrictions between Assam and Meghalaya and removed barricades, allowing vehicles to travel to Meghalaya.

Informing that Assam Police has issued fresh advisories allowing vehicles to travel to Meghalaya security sources said that the travel restrictions which were put in place after the clashes in Mukroh village on November 22 (Tuesday) where at least six persons lost their lives were lifted in consultation with its Meghalaya counterpart.

The Assam police had placed restrictions on inter-state travel advising people to avoid travelling to the neighbouring state following the incident.

Security sources however clarified that heavy security was deployed, and prohibitory orders remained in force at the disputed area along the Assam-Meghalaya border.

It is significant that the Save Hynniewtrep Mission (SHM), a conglomeration of five NGOs gathered in Meghalaya’s capital Shillong and staged demonstrations against the Mukroh incident on Saturday.

The agitating protestors burnt effigies of union home minister Amit Shah, Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K. Sangma and Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma in front of the premises of Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangma's residence at Polo Hills.

The protesters strongly condemned the alleged failure of the Centre, Meghalaya and Assam governments to resolve the long pending border dispute.

Hynniewtrep Indigenous Territorial Organisation, another social entity, also observed 'Red Flag Day' on the premises of the U Soso Tham Auditorium in Shillong.

The ministry of home affairs has already asked the CBI to probe the November 22 clash on the Assam-Meghalaya border in which six people were killed.

Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma has also moved the National Human Rights Commission, seeking action for the alleged violation of human rights by cops from Assam.

Assam has also notified a separate judicial inquiry, appointing retired Gauhati HC judge Rumi Phukan to head the probe. Meghalaya, too, set up a special investigation team to probe the circumstances of the clash, apparently triggered by Assam cops going in pursuit of a truck allegedly ferrying smuggled timber.

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