IMPHAL, April 29: Perturbed with frequent monetary demands and intimidation from various pressure groups the stone crushers from Mantripukhri to Kanglatombi staged a sit in protest demonstration at Khonghampat today.
The protest was organized by the Northern valley stone crusher owner`™s Welfare Association, Pheidinga an apex body of 47 stone crushers functioning from Mantripukhri to Kanglatombi. 3000 plus laborers, men and women, from the 47 stone crushing units along the National Highway 39 between Mantripukhri to Sekmai stretch came out in the open to protest against the unbearable extortion and subsequent kidnapping or intimidation from underground outfits.
A member of the association stated that the monetary demands from various groups have made their lifes miserable.
Further it has been reported that a huge amount of monetary demand have been imposed by 14 splinter groups of a militant organizations.
The labourers recalled that in 2009 four person including a driver was kidnapped for monetary demands by some pressure groups and asserted that recently on April 11 two persons of the stone crusher community was released after being held captive for several days for a similar issue.
The protestors during the demonstration displayed various placards which read, `We oppose monetary demand` `one faction one demand, fourteen factions fourteen demands` `Don`™t imposed unbearable demand` `Many faction, more confusion` etc.
In the meantime, a memorandum was also submitted to the Chief Minister of Manipur drawing his intervention.
In the memorandum the association asked to Chief Minister to provide protection for the labourers from various anti social elements and activities like monetary demands, threat/arrest from both the non state and state actors.
The stone crushers further demanded for exercising ROP from Sekmai Quarry to Keithelmanbi Quary on regular basis and at the same time to stop irrelevant money demand by the state forces from the Tata truck who supplies the raw material to the unit.
The tax collection from non state actors and also from state machineries if persist the stone crushers will become bankrupt.