Tuesday, February 7, 2023

Traffic on NH-102 in Manipur resumes after three days


Normal traffic on Imphal-Moreh section of NH-102 in Manipur resumed on Saturday as agitating villagers held talks with officials of the Manipur government.
Normal traffic on the highway remained disturbed in the last three days due to blockade imposed by the agitating villagers.
Villagers of Sora and its adjoining villages were agitating against the state government’s fresh attempt to demarcate the lands acquired for construction of the permanent campus of the National Sport University at Yaithibi Loukol.
The latest attempt of the government was at a time while villagers, particularly land owners were pressing the government to return their lands after the campus of the National Sport University was shifted to Imphal West district.
Even as the site for the university shifted, the state government was planning to set up a mega food park on the land earlier acquired by the government. The villagers reignited their agitation when concerned officials of the state government backed by a large contingent of armed police personnel tried to conduct a land survey for demarcation of the lands that had been acquired by the government on Thursday morning.
In the clash that broke, at least three police personnel including the additional SP of Kakching district and four villagers were wounded.
Alleging the state government of attempting to conduct the survey using security forces without addressing their demands, villagers imposed a total blockade on the NH-102 since Thursday afternoon. On day two of the blockade, agitating villagers also set afire a police booth and a motorcycle suspected to belong to the police on Friday.
The police had to resorted to firing tear gas shells and mock bombs to open the highway for normal traffic.
However, the villagers opened the highway today in the afternoon after an understanding was reached in a talk with the concerned government officials.
The villagers have however warned to resume the blockade from tomorrow at 6 pm if the state government continues land survey and demarcation without the consent of the villagers.
The lands at the Yaithibi Loukol were acquired by the state government for development of the permanent campus of the National Sports University. After the site for National Sports University was shifted to Imphal West district, villagers, particularly land owners, have been pressing the state government to return their lands and have raised strong objections to the setting up of a mega food park in the acquired land.

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