Decrying authorities’ attempt to change the 18 Assam Rifles (AR) stationed in Sagolmang Khewa with 28 AR, villagers from various regions of Khundrakpam Assembly Constituency blocked traffic movement at Sagolmang Khew Bazar along Imphal-Saikul road on Tuesday.
The villagers cautioned authorities concerned not to proceed with the exchange and demanded that they must pull back all Assam Rifles from the area and deploy state forces instead if they were planning on forcing the exchange.
As such, the villagers announced a deadline of 12 hours for authorities to clarify their stance failing which would result in intense agitations from the people.
Speaking to the media on the sidelines of protest, president of The United Committee Pukhao and Makeng Dolaithabi GP Thokchom Sanjoy stated that violent confrontations along the Pukhao hill ranges between the two warring communities had simmered down ever since the 18 Assam Rifles started manning the sensitive security zones.
“There had been serious speculations surrounding the security actions of the Assam Rifles, especially the 22 AR but that all changed since the deployment of 18 AR in the area,” he said.
However, he maintained that the move to exchange the Assam Rifles was a move that could potentially sever the trust between the Assam Rifles and people in the area.
As such, he demanded authorities concerned not to push the exchange and provide a clear-cut answer to the people within 12 hours.
He further added that the public would not remain silent till authorities implement concrete measures.