Meghalaya: Shillong sees semblance of calm with relaxed curfew; internet suspension yet to be lifted


SHILLONG, June 8, 2018: A semblance of calm seems to have returned to Shillong exactly a week after it experienced unprecedented turbulence over an incident in the heart of the city.

An altercation and an assault on three persons at Sweepers' Colony, Them ïew Mawlong, on May 31 had spiralled into violent protests at Motphran.

The incident came as a jolt to the three-month-old Conrad K. Sangma government which reached out to various stakeholders to restore normalcy.

Six days after the imposition of curfew, first in "vulnerable" localities and then in the entire city, life has begun to normalise here.

The improvement in the law-and-order scenario prompted the East Khasi Hills district administration to further relax curfew in the vulnerable areas from 7am to 2pm on Thursday (from 7am till noon on Wednesday). In the rest of the city, the curfew relaxation hours remained from 5am to 6pm. The relaxation saw the market areas flooded with people and traffic snarls in several areas.

In the evening, the East Khasi Hills district magistrate Peter S. Dkhar announced that curfew would be relaxed on Friday for nine hours from 7am in areas under Lumdiengjri police station, including Jaiaw, Mawkhar, Umsohsun, Riatsamthiah, Wahingdoh, Mission, Mawprem, Lumdiengjri, Lamavilla, Qualapatty, Wahthapbru, Sunny Hill, Cantonment, Mawlong Hat and cantonment beat house areas (excluding localities beyond Umshyrpi bridge). It will be promulgated again from 4pm until further orders.

Night curfew in the city will be effective from 8pm (instead of 6pm) till 5am from Friday, until issuance of fresh orders, he added.

Mobile Internet and SMS services, suspended since last Friday, were yet to be restored till the filing of this report. The services were suspended to thwart spread of rumours and unverified news. The administration has not said when the services will be restored.

"We are reviewing the situation before taking a call on lifting the suspension," Dkhar said.

Though calm has returned to the city, law-enforcing agencies are not taking the unexpected violence lightly.

A police official said the situation would be assessed before taking any decision to totally lift the curfew.

TNT News with inputs from The Telegraph

Image Courtesy: UB