Imphal, Jan 31,
Life in Imphal was put to a grinding halt paralyzing all wake of life in the entire state in response to the 24 hour general strike called by the Manipur People against Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 (MANPAC) against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 which the BJP is putting all effort to pass at Rajya Sabha.
For the first time after the BJP led government under Chief Minister Biren Singh came to power in 2017, a total shut down was witnessed with no vehicles (except those of the police, press and Medicals) were seen moving on the road. The general strike called against Bill also unites both the Hill and the plain people with Hill people giving full response to the general strike called.
Effigies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Rajnath and Chief Minister N. Biren Singh were burnt at many places of the state. At Yairipok Bamon Leikai in Thoubal district, the protestor tried to hang the effigy of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, however a strong team of police came and foiled the attempt.
Imphal Times reporters witness the whole area of Manipur stood still during the 24 hours general strike called by Manipur People against Citizenship Amendment Bill 2016 (MANPAC) against the contentious CAB. However there is no report of any untoward incidents till the filling of the report.
The 24 hours General strike was called by MANPAC, a body formed by 72 different organisations comprising of different communities of the state to fight against the contentious CAB.
The General Strike which started from the midnight of 30 Jan 2019 severely affects the normal lives of the state. In view of the bandh, the roads wore a deserted look; educational institution and other government institutions remained closed, shops and other business establishment shut down for the day.
Bandh supporters came out in street and blocked the roads; tyres were also burnt at the roads though essential services were allowed to move.
In many areas of Manipur people not only blocked the roads, they also staged sit-in-protest at various places.
Speaking to media persons while staging sit-in-protest at the gate of Manipur University, President of MUSU Keisham Lebanon said that they are staging the sit-in-protest as a mark to show their solidarity in the general strike called by MANPAC against the contentious CAB. He also condemned the atrocities done by Delhi police against the protestors of Manipur even manhandling of women protestors by male police. He added that if the said Bill is passed in Rajya Sabha and becomes an act the whole indigenous population of the North East region will be wiped out from the face of the earth. He finally appealed the authorities to stand firm against the bill and to withdraw it in the Rajya Sabha.
It can be mention that yesterday also Meira rallies was staged at various places of Manipur protesting against the Controversial Bill.
In a nut shell the general strike called against the CAB was a successful and a very effective one.
Rinku Khumukcham, Editor of Imphal Times has more than 15+ years in the field of Journalism. A seasoned editor, was a former editor of ISTV News. He resides in Keishamthong Elangbam Leikai, with his wife and parents.