Driver kidnapping at Kohima angers fellow tanker drivers

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IMPHAL, June 29: Angered over an incident of a tanker driver being kidnapped from Kohima Town, drivers today decided against unloading their fuel in Imphal.

The Driver who has been rescued later by a combined team of CRPF and Nagaland Armed Police has been identified as Pobitro. He was driving a tanker bearing registration no AS 23 AC 3639. The tanker’s owner has been identified as Md Firoz Kanwar of Tuliajan, Dibrugarh district, Assam.

The incident occurred not long after drivers of the All Manipur Petroleum Tankers & Drivers Union had undergone a steering wheel down agitation against the kidnapping of a driver by cadres of the Naga National Council for ransom from Kohima Town

The incident of kidnapping the driver occurred early morning around 3:45am near the gate of the Naga Hospital, Kohima Town.

Several tankers after loading fuel including petrol and diesel from several locations including Khatkhati, Numaligarh and Tinsukia were coming towards the state escorted by the Central Reserve Police Force.

Taking advantage of the sporadic escort vehicles, armed miscreants forcefully stop one of the tankers which was travelling a little farther from the escort vehicles and kidnapped the driver at gun-point.

Meanwhile, the CRPF team escorting the tankers was informed about the kidnapping without any delay following which, the escort team informed the concerned authorities of the Nagaland Armed Police and launched a joint search operation.

The driver was rescued from a place in Kohima, informed the source.

The rescue of the driver however could not pacify the drivers of the 64 tankers including Gas Bullet who after reaching Imphal, decided to launch a steering wheel down agitation while condemning the incident.

Following the agitation of the drivers, the tankers have not fed the IOC Depot besides other oil pumps for today, the source informed.

It is also learnt that considering the plight of the general public and following strong instruction from the union to unload the tankers, the drivers have decided to unload their tankers tomorrow at the IOC depot and the oil pumps.

The tankers which are at the Khuman Lampak Inter-state Bus Terminus in the Standing Position will be unloaded tomorrow even though tomorrow is a Sunday, informed the source.

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