Meghalaya MLA demands release of villagers arrested by Assam Police

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HT Bureau

SHILLONG, Sept 27: Congress MLA from Rambrai-Jyrngam, Kimfa Sydney Marbaniang, Thusday sought the intervention of the state government for the immediate release of the five villagers arrested by the Assam Police recently from West Khasi Hills.

“I urge the government of Meghalaya to take necessary steps and ensure that these five people be released forthwith from the custody of Assam police,” Marbaniang said while moving a Zero Hour notice in the Assembly on Thursday.

Boko police had arrested the five persons on the allegation that they were involved in the recent assault incident while acting on an FIR filed by Assam officials who visited Hahuapara village for conducting inspection of the road constructed by Meghalaya government on August 28.

On seeing the move made by the Assam officials, the villagers offered stiff resistance and opposition which were followed by an argument between them. The villagers claimed that the area falls under Meghalaya.

Marbaniang said that the five people who include two women and one 18-year-old disabled girl who have been arrested are languishing in Boko police station for almost 3 weeks now.

Also demanding the government to stop the Assam police from harassing the people residing in the inter-state border, Marbaniang lamented that the Assam government has failed to honour the decision taken at the joint meeting of the two states held in 2010.

The chief ministers of Assam and Meghalaya in a meeting held on July 5, 2010 had decided that as the border talks between the two states is an ongoing process, there should not be any attempt on the part of the two governments to try encroaching into each other’s territory.

“However, it is unfortunate that the government of Assam has not honoured this decision but continues to encroach into the territory of Meghalaya while the state government have turned a nelson’s eye to the plight of its own people,” he said.

Informing that he had also visited the affected area recently, Marbaniang said that he was informed by the people that when they prevented the Assam officials to stop the destruction of the road constructed under MNREGS, soon a team of Assam police arrived in the village and beat up several residents and arrested the people.

He alleged that due to the continued hunting down of the villagers by the Assam police, people were forced to flee to the nearby jungles.

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