Tribals call 'indefinite economic blockade' on NH-44

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Shillong, Oct 13 (UNI) Tribal communities in Assam's Barak Valley have called an indefinite economic blockade from 1700 hrs on October 15 demanding punishment to 'errant' government officials.

The blockade would affect the National Highway 44 connecting Badarpur-Shillong-Guwahati, which is also the lifeline of Mizoram, Tripura, Barak valley of Assam and parts of Manipur, Barak Valley Khasi-Jaintia Welfare Association (BVKJWA) president Nessly Shylla told UNI by telephone.

The BVKJWA, along with Barak Valley Tribal Rights Protection Front, All Dimasa Students' Union and All Assam Rongmei Naga Students' Union decided to impose the blockade after the Assam government 'failed' to punish two forest officials for indulging in atrocities committed in Badshaigilla village under Karimganj district of the state.

''We are compelled to resort to agitation as the Assam government has failed to punish the Forest Department officials involved in the atrocities committed on innocent Khasi-Pnar people living in Barak Valley,'' Mr Shylla said.

The organisations had alleged that Divisional Forest Officer(DFO), Karimganj district, Salman Uddin Choudhury and Forest Beat Officer Musarraf Hussain Choudhury, were harassing and torturing tribals in the area.

Earlier, the organisations submitted petitions to Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi demanding immediate transfer of the DFO and arrest of the Forest Beat Officer.

The organisations also demanded immediate compensation to the affected Khasi-Pnar villagers.

UNI

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