Security forces escort over 500 loaded trucks into Manipur

Imphal Jan 8 (IANS) More than 500 loaded trucks and oil tankers were on Sunday escorted into Manipur capital Imphal from Assam by state and central paramilitary forces, beating a Naga-imposed blockade.

The 511 trucks loaded with fuel and other consumer items, building materials and medicines were escorted over 220-km throughout the mountainous National Highway-37 from Silchar district in Assam to Imphal.

Officials said that 531 more loaded trucks and oil tankers will be escorted similarly in the next trip.

A report aid supporters of Naga blockade in Manipur torched a truck loaded with rice bags near Kotland along the national highway on Sunday morning, but no arrest was made.

The United Naga Council imposed the indefinite economic blockade of the state on November 1 last year to protest the Manipur government’s plan to create two new districts in the state.

The UNC claimed several “lands of the Nagas” — where they have been traditionally the inhabitants — would be usurped by the new districts.

Meanwhile, prices of consumer and other items have increased considerably, with traders maintaining that transporters are demanding extra fares since supply vehicles remain stranded for days at Jiribam district headquarters while waiting for armed escorts.

The Manipur government had requested the Centre to intervene and facilitate tripartite talks to end the blockade, but there is no response as yet from New Delhi.

–IANS

il/tsb/vt

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