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Assam organisations called off ‘blockade’ for Meghalaya

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Tura, Oct 28: The blockade called by over 40 organizations from Goalpara, Assam has been called off after assurances from the Meghalaya State government to allow free movement of people, goods and vehicles from the neighbouring state.

The economic blockade call off comes in the wake of the Meghalaya State government easing restrictions to travel within the state from people from outside the state in view of the easing of pandemic norms and regulations across the country. While Meghalaya had still held fort, the situation for residents of Assam with business interests in Meghalaya became critical leading to the threat of boycott.

The All Assam Students’ Union (AASU) member from Krishnai, Gitartha Sarma confirmed the blockade call off stating that there had been a promise to not harass people from the district of Goalpara in conducting business across Meghalaya.

“We were called by our SP, Goalpara on Oct 27 who relayed the information of the movement restrictions being called off. Heeding to the request from the state of Meghalaya, including the North Garo Hills (NGH) deputy commissioner, we have decided to call off the blockade. We are thankful to them for understanding our concerns,” said Sarma.

More than 40 organizations, including AASU, ABSU, AMSU among others had threatened to stop vehicles and people coming from Meghalaya through the state. The blockade was set to begin in earnest tomorrow, Oct 29, though many from the state had complained that they were already not being allowed to proceed through Paikan, near Krishnai under Goalpara since the past week.

The organizations had moved to stop all incoming and outgoing activities from the Garo Hills region but the last minute order by the state government has changed the status quo for now.

Meanwhile the organizations have stated that the withdrawal of the blockade was on the condition that there would be no harassment of people from Assam when they enter the state for business or travel purposes, as well as no untoward activities against them.

“If such things do happen, we will certainly look at restarting the agitation,” AASU member added.

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