Curfew was relaxed for seven hours today in the 14 "vulnerable" areas of Shillong as no incident of violence was reported from any part of the city in the past 24 hours.
Curfew was relaxed for seven hours today in the 14 “vulnerable” areas of Shillong as no incident of violence was reported from any part of the city in the past 24 hours, a senior district official said. District authorities would also examine the possibility of relaxing night curfew imposed on the entire state capital, he said. “The clampdown on the 14 affected areas, under Lumdiengjri police station and Cantonment Beat House, has been relaxed from 7 am till 2 pm today,” East Khasi Hills district Deputy Commissioner P S Dkhar told PTI. Mobile internet and messaging services, however, continue to remain under suspension as a precautionary measure, Dkhar said.
Yesterday, too, the authorities had briefly lifted the curfew in the “vulnerable” areas of the Meghalaya capital. Governor Ganga Prasad had urged people to maintain peace. Shillong had been in the grip of violence since May 29 following a fight between Sikh residents in city’s Punjabi Lane area, also known as the Sweeper Colony, and the Khasi drivers of state-run buses. Heavy security was deployed across the city in view of the clashes that injured over 10 people, including policemen and CRPF personnel. A high-level committee was also formed by BJP-backed Meghalaya Democratic Alliance government to find a permanent solution to the issue of relocation of the Sweeper Colony, inhabited by the Punjabis.
Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong, who heads the committee, said yesterday 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. The situation in the state capital has shown signs of improvement over the past three days, said another district official. “Barring the 14 vulnerable areas, life has returned to normal to a large extent in the state capital,” he said. Taxis are plying normally on the streets and shopkeepers were seen doing brisk business at the Bara Bazaar and Police Bazaar areas this morning, the official stated. “Tourists were also seen taking pictures and loitering around the Golf Course and Ward’s Lake,” he added.