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20 days economic blockade extends Manipur’s war of nerves

Imphal, Aug 1: The United Naga Council (UNC) has announced imposition of 20 days of economic blockade along the two national highways leading to Manipur starting from 6 am of August 4.
The United Naga Council (UNC) said that this is its expression of democratic rights, without which there seems to be no way to attract the attention and response of the government and the concerned authorities.
It is worth noting that the All Naga Students' Association, Manipur (ANSAM) had imposed 68 days blockade on the national highways leading to Manipur which ended on June 18, against elections to the District Councils in Manipur hills.
The UNC announced imposition of the 20-day economic blockade saying that the Government of India had failed to respond to its ultimatum which ended on July 31.
The UNC said today, "The ultimatum had been served following the declaration of the severance of all political ties with the government of Manipur by the Naga people in the Naga Peoples’ Convention (NPC) held on July 1, 2010 and their decision to seek the intervention of the Government of India for an alternative arrangement for the Nagas in Manipur state."
There are four points which the UNC demands from the Government of India.
The first is a demand for instituting a Judicial Enquiry into the May 6, 2010 incident at Mao Gate, where two students were shot dead and more than a hundred 'peaceful' protestors injured by the Manipur state forces.
Another point is the immediate withdrawal of the imposed Section 144 CrPC and 'demilitarisation' of the Naga areas by removal of the Indian Reserved Battalion (IRB) and Manipur police commandos.
It has also demanded removal of 'wanted' tags and fixing of rewards imposed on two Naga leaders.
The UNC has further demanded dissolution of the Autonomous District Councils which it termed as 'undemocratically instituted'.
Meanwhile, the UNC appealed to all concerned to kindly extend their cooperation towards "this expression of our democratic rights."
The United Naga Council said that it is compelled to resort to such agitation as the five-day ultimatum submitted on July 27 to the Prime Minister of India had evoked no response till date. "The Government of India’s intervention had been sought on the irredeemably vitiated situation prevailing in the Naga areas in the present state of Manipur within five days of the ultimatum and the same was widely circulated to the media for the benefit for the general information of the public," the UNC said. (Newmai News Network)

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