IMPHAL, Aug 2: Three persons were killed and several people injured in three separate accidents at Kangpokpi, Kanglatombi and Charhazar along the NH-2 during the economic blockade called by Sadar Hills Districthood Demand Committee today.
The deceased persons have been identified as Yaireiphi Lunglen, 22, d/o Shinglei Lunglen of Damdei Taloulong, and Suga Maya Rijal, 45, w/o (late) Ram Prasad Rizal of Damdei near college. The other deceased person is yet to be identified.
The first accident occurred at around 1:30 pm today at Kangpokpi when a truck on Army duty (registration number AS-01 BC 7886) coming towards Imphal was attacked by the blockade supporters by pelting stones continuously. The driver was seriously injured in the attack. He lost control of the truck and collided with a Bolero jeep (registration number NL-07 4825) coming from the opposite direction. The passengers of the jeep were also injured.
The second accident occurred at around 2 pm near Kanglatombi chidren home when an oil tanker (registration number NL-07 A 4211) came under attack from the blockade supporters. The driver of the oil tanker was injured in the attack. Three persons including Yaireiphi and Suga Maya were hit after the driver lost control of his vehicle. The tanker later collided with a tree on the road-side.
The three persons later succumbed to injuries after they were admitted in hospitals.
The third accident occurred at 2:10 pm at Charhazar when two trucks carrying sand and medical items came under serious attack from the blockade supporters. The truck carrying medical items (registration number AS-25 A 7627) collided with the truck carrying sand (registration number WB-41 E 3524). The medical truck after the collision hit a nearby grocery shop while the other truck slipped down the roadside drainage.
At the time of occurrence of the accident, some blockade supporters burnt down a truck carrying grocery items. The registration number of the truck is NL-O3 T 1189.
Another bus carrying printed documents related to the state teacher eligibility test was also burnt by the blockade supporters.
Meanwhile, the general secretary of Sadar Hills Districthood Demand Committee, Tonghen Kipgen has claimed that the deceased persons are blockade supporters who have made extreme sacrifice for the creation of Sadar Hills district. Chief Minister Okram Ibobi has taken three precious lives. The committee would make many more of such sacrifices if the state government fails to fulfill the demands of Sadar Hills people, he asserted.
The demand for Sadar Hills district is not to cause any disturbance to the state but to uplift the socioeconomic conditions of the backward people of the region. The development of the whole state cannot be considered with just few development projects in Imphal, Tonghen noted.
Apart from the ongoing economic blockade on the two national highways, the committee will also call an indefinite general strike from the midnight of August 2 in Sadar Hills area, he announced.
The committee would further convene a public meeting and it would decide whether to accept the dead bodies or not. No ex-gratia would be entertained in this regard, the general secretary added.
On the other hand, O. Ibobi has asserted that the state government is seriously considering on how to resolve the issue of Jiribam and Sadar hills. However the government has to make a thorough study of all possible repercussions.
“The government is not against granting districthood to Sadar hills or Jiribam, we are very much enthusiastic”, he said.
Besides Sadar hills and Jiribam, the government is of the view of granting districthood to other places in Ukhrul and churachandpur but the decision would be taken as per people’s convenience and other administrative purposes, asserted Ibobi.
In his response to queries raised on commitment of granting the district especially for Sadar hills, Ibobi stated the issue is not about credit or election but districthood will be provided as per peoples’ convenience.