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Economic blockade on Nagaland from November 17

By Our Correspondent Updated: Nov 15, 2020 11:55 pm

13 organisations based in Karbi Anglong announce indefinite blockade to protest alleged encroachment of Daldali reserve forest

Leaders of KSA briefing reporters at Diphu on Sunday. (EM Images)

Our Correspondent
Diphu, Nov. 15 (EMN):
Thirteen organisations based in Karbi Anglong, Assam, have announced an indefinite economic blockade on Nagaland starting Tuesday, November 17.

The blockade has been called to protest the alleged encroachment of Daldali reserve forest in Assam-Nagaland border by people from Nagaland.

Both the factions of Karbi Students’ Association (KSA) — one led by Simeon Rongphar and the other by Bijoy Bey — are spearheading the agitation.

Addressing a press conference at Diphu on Sunday, the KSA president, Rongphar said: “The KSA, together with 12 social organisations, is imposing an indefinite economic blockade on Nagaland from November 17 as despite our repeated requests, the Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council (KAAC) authority, the Assam and Nagaland governments have not held any discussion regarding Assam-Nagaland border issue and we are being compelled to take this step.”

He announced that the blockade would be imposed on NH-29 and NH-129, which connects Nagaland and Manipur with Assam.

Exemptions would be made for emergency services, but movement of goods-carrying vehicles would be totally restricted, Rongphar said.

“We are not against Nagaland; but the Nagaland government and particularly, the Lotha tribe of the Nagas, where their permanent area is Wokha in Nagaland, backed by some miscreants have been encroaching the forest land of Karbi Anglong. If any untoward incidents occur during the economic blockade, the KAAC and Assam and Nagaland governments will be responsible for it,” Rongphar said.

The other KSA president, Bey, said: “Our demands include taking up immediate initiative by Assam and Nagaland government for a permanent border solution, cancellation of land pattas issued by Nagaland government to the settlers of Rilan village illegally set-up at pillar No.1 inside Daldali reserve forest, to dismantle the houses and other structures constructed by land encroachers inside the forest land under the patronage of Nagaland government, to re-install the border pillars that were removed or damaged by land encroachers, to vacate the IRB camps set-up in the encroached forest land as it is totally illegal, to stop interfering by the Nagas in the ongoing construction work of patrolling road taken up by Forest department from Karbi Anglong and to stop the installation of electric poles.”

Further, he appealed to the Assam government not to wait ‘until the lives of people are lost’.

According to him, when ‘some issues’ arose at Khanapara in Assam-Meghalaya border, instant actions were taken by the government.

‘If Assam government does not want Karbi Anglong to be a part of Assam, then suggest to the central government to grant autonomous state (to Karbi Anglong). If not, protect the Assam-Nagaland border in Karbi Anglong,’ he said.

He also questioned the KAAC authority why they have not convinced the Assam government to hold talks with its Nagaland counterpart to solve the border issue.

The supporting organisations are Karbi Anglong Women Justice Forum, United Karbi Anglong Women Association, Karbi Students and Youth Council, Karbi Students for Justice, Hills Progressive Youth Association, All Dimasa Students’ Union, All Adivasi Students’ Association of Assam, United Karbi Youth Association, Ex-United Peoples Democratic Solidarity Welfare Society) and Students Youth Council.

By Our Correspondent Updated: Nov 15, 2020 11:55:00 pm