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Shillong gradually limps back to normalcy after violent clashes left over 100 police personnel injured

The situation in Shillong gradually limped back to normalcy as the imposed curfew was relaxed for nine hours on Friday, following week-long clashes between protestors and security forces.

Curfew was relaxed in the 14 affected areas of the state capital from 7 am to 4 pm with no incident of violence reported for the fourth day, East Khasi Hills deputy commissioner PS Dkhar said.

"The situation has returned to normal. Life and businesses are back, as you can see around. Markets and taxis are plying normally," he said. In rest of the city, the curfew will be in force from 8 pm to 5 am as a preventive measure.

Shillong. Representational Image. PTI

Representational Image. PTI

The Meghalaya capital had been in the grip of violence since last week following clashes between local tribals and Punjabi residents. The curfew at Punjabi Lane and in 13 other affected areas will be resumed at 4 pm as a precautionary measure, he said. "We do not want the situation to relapse," he said, adding that heavy security forces have been deployed in vulnerable areas.

Messaging services had been restored briefly on Thursday and authorities would decide whether mobile telephone services would be allowed, he continued.

According to a report in The Shillong Times, SP (City) Stephan A Rynjah told reporters on Thursday that over 100 police personnel were injured, some seriously, during the clashes with protesters as police exercised maximum restraint.

Rynjah said that the majority of agitators were reeking of alcohol when arrested. Around 40 persons were detained and released but around 10-15 persons were arrested for trying to hurt police personnel on duty and destroy public property.

From the people arrested, the police recovered a number of weapons. They included 26 petrol bombs, one machete, two ‘gandri’, two wooden sticks, eight empty bottles, seven racks containing empty bottles.

The district authorities had ordered a magisterial inquiry headed by I Majaw to probe the incident and to identify rumour mongers inciting violence. She has been given two more weeks after she sought additional time to complete the inquiry, reported Shillong Times.

A high-level committee was also formed by the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance government to find a permanent solution to the issue of relocation of the Sweeper Colony, inhabited by Punjabis. Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong, who heads the committee, said on Thursday that the panel would recommend a feasible and permanent solution to the state government for the relocation of the colony, which has been a long pending issue

With the situation easing, many holidayers were again seen flocking favourite spots in the city, popularly known as "Scotland of the East." A good number of tourists were seen at famous spots like Golf Course, Ward's Lake, museum and cathedral, reported South Asia Views.
With inputs from PTI

Updated Date: Jun 08, 2018 16:05 PM

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