Blockade supporters attack 20 trucks near Imphal, injure truck drivers

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Imhpal, May 24 (ANI): A number of truck drivers and helpers suffered serious injuries, when about 20 goods-laden trucks were attacked by several blockade supporters here on Monday morning.

The convoy of trucks, oil tankers and gas bullet tankers came under pelting of stones and boulders on National Highway-53 near Noney in Tamenglong district, about 45 kilometres from Imphal.

"Many of our fellowmen were hurt", a driver who escaped unhurt said.

The driver narrated that the blockade supporters, some of whom were holding small hand guns, caught drivers of about five trucks, and threatened them that they would be taken down to the gorge and killed.

However, just as some vehicles of Assam Rifles were seen coming towards that area, the miscreants fled.

Wind-shield glasses of over 20 trucks were broken in the attack.

The trucks stayed behind in Barak areas on Sunday after one of the vehicles had broken down. Later, a few more trucks, returning from Silchar, joined the halted ones in the area.

After spending a few hours of the night, 35 oil tankers, 10 gas bullet tankers and 100 trucks carrying assorted essential commodities left the place for Imphal at about 2.30 a.m. on the NH-53.

As the convoy was about to reach Noney at around four o'clock in the morning, some miscreants started raining stones and boulders on the trucks in Langkhong area.

Narrating the incident, Prem Singh, an oil tanker driver, said: "When we were about to reach Noneh, suddenly, around four to five youths came out and started pelting stones damaging the NRL oil tanker. As we were following the NRL tanker, we stopped. The youth continued pelting stones heavily as well as with wooden logs. They started damaging the vehichles.

Leaving behind the vehichles, we ran about one-and-a-half kilometer to call the CRPF personnels for help. Thus, from Noneh side, the CRPF as well as the Assam Rifles personnel came to rescue us. We have been assured by the CRPF about security and been advised to move ahead."

State Minister for Consumer Affairs and Food and Public Distribution Yumkham Irabot visited Khumbong bazar to assess the situation.

Interacting with media persosn, Irabot said that he would apprise the Central Government about the incident for necessary action and assured that he would extend help to the drivers whose trucks had been damaged in the attack at Noney.

The incident occurred a day after Manipur Chief Minister explained about area domination by the security forces along the route for smooth flow of trucks. (ANI)

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