Meghalaya: Local groups stage protest against proposed land survey in Mawlai



The Youth body of Mawlai town (Seng Samla Shnong Mawlai Pyllun), along with several NGOs, held a "peaceful rally" at Mawlai pump junction in Shillong on Tuesday, to protest against the proposed land survey at Mawlai Nongkwar, where the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) camp is "temporarily" stationed for law and order purposes.

The agitating groups have expressed their discomfort over the proposed survey, as they believe that the government is likely going to hand over the land permanently to the CRPF.

"The land belongs to the Department of Arts and Culture, and we want the government to use this land for infrastructural purposes that will benefit the people of Mawlai and not hand it over to the CRPF," general secretary of the Seng Samla Mawlai Pyllun, Samran Syiem said.

He informed that during a meeting with the Deputy Commissioner (DC) of East Khasi Hills on Monday, the latter has agreed to put on hold the survey until necessary clarifications are issued to the respective groups.

"This protest is not to discourage the government departments from coming here, but the people do not want any CRPF camp in Mawlai," he said.

"We already have the Mawlai police station, and the 1st Meghalaya Police Batallion is also located here. We don't need the CRPF camp in this town," Syiem reiterated.

The youth leader further added that the government should consider expanding the existing Tribal Research Institute like the construction of a museum or an educational park for the benefit of the youths.

He further informed that the youth body is contemplating meeting the local MLA, the MDC, the Mawlai Town Dorbar, the Home Minister, Arts and Culture Minister and the DC to seek clarification on the matter and, to request up-gradation of the Tribal Research Institute.

(Edited by Iban Mawrie)

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