Union Minister of State for External Affairs, RK Ranjan requested the Railway Ministry to explore the feasibility to use the current railway line in the state for supply of essential commodities, to ease the shortage of essential commodities in Manipur.
RK Ranjan Singh, in a letter addressed to Ashwini Vaishnaw Union Railway Minister, stated that the indefinite bandh has resulted in non-movement of private and commercial vehicles, thereby bringing about acute shortages of essential commodities like petrol, diesel and cooking gas across Manipur.
“You are aware, National Highway No 2 and 53 are arteries for supply of essential goods to Manipur. They are Manipur’s lifeline. NH 2, entering Manipur from Nagaland is the preferred route for transporters. However, for the last one week, NH-2 has been blocked by the Nagaland based organisation”, said RK Ranjan Singh.
RK Ranjan drew the attention of the Ministry to explore the feasibility to use the railway line to bring in supplies.
On January 27, the first-ever freight train reached Rani Gaidinliu Railway Station, in Tamenglong district creating history. Subsequently, another train arrived at Khongsang Station from Rani Gaidinliu Station on the first Jiribam-Imphal railway line in Manipur on Monday covering a distance of 56 km. The line between Rani Gaidinliu Station at Oinamlong village to Khongsang Station at Khongsang is a part of the Rs 14000-crore Jiribam-Imphal new broad gauge railway line project.
The Jiribam-Imphal railway new broad gauge railway line project being constructed at an estimated cost of over Rs 14,000 crore by the Northeast Frontier Railway. The most crucial railway line is the 111km Jiribam (Assam border) to Imphal project which is yet to be completed.
Meanwhile, the Southern Angami Youth Organization (SAYO), Nagaland on Wednesday stated that the Manipur government should pay heed to the call of TPO to withdraw its armed personnel and dismantle the concrete structures, “which were illegally constructed instead of making unfounded claims over Kezol Tsa area as Manipur state territorial jurisdiction and political boundary.”
The presence of Manipur government machineries in the said area is evident that it violates the arbitration undertaking signed by the rightful owners of the land that is the TPO, Board of Arbitrators, Mao Council, Maram and SAPO and wherein, it was firmly resolved that no activity shall be allowed in the disputed area pending resolution, SAYO stated in a release.
SAYO claimed that the area in question was never acquired either by the government of Nagaland or by the government of Manipur.
In customary tradition, land possession is indigenous by nature and the rights of the non-cadastral land rest with its people and the community, it further stated.
Therefore, the question of negotiation over a political boundary between the two state governments or intervention from the government does not arise under any circumstances as the matter is pending in the court of TPO, it further stated.
“The current situation will only further escalate with the involvement and statement of some unions and associations who are randomly threatening to counter the stance of the bandh without understanding the issue or without any objectives to settle the existing issue,” it mentioned.
It also questioned the stand of the government of Assam as to whether they endorsed the counter blockade called by certain Manipur associations in some pockets of the state.
SAYO appreciated the concern of various unions “who understood the stand of Southern Angami in undertaking the efforts to enable an amicable solution to the pending issue through the court of customary traditions.”