SHILLONG, June 04: In a serious case of security breach, around 100 protestors on Monday barged into the high security premises of Meghalaya Secretariat during the curfew hours. They however did not enter the building. They protested outside the building, displaying placards and shouting slogans to remove the Harijans from Them Iew Mawlong (Sweeper’s colony).
The police personnel at the secretariat premises were caught off guard when the protesters under the banner of “voice of the people” took out a surprise march and barged inside the building premises.
The helpless security personnel, who were also very few in number, could not prevent the protesters, who were also members of the hawkers’ association. One of the security officers admitted to the lack of security personnel being deployed at the secretariat.
The incident took place soon after the curfew was imposed by the district administration in the entire Shillong city from 4 PM onwards following the move by the agitators to take out a protest rally from Motphran area.
As soon as they entered the premises, the protesters armed with placards started shouting slogans “we demand relocating of the Harijans from Them Iew Mawlong” in front of the building.
However, after the intervention of district magistrates and police, five members from the protesters were allowed to meet the chief minister.
Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma however said that the protesters had not come there with any mal-intention. “They (protesters) were very much concerned about the issue and I can tell you we were happy to meet them and when I met them they expressed the economic hardship being faced in the city,” he said.
Stating that he would not like to look at it as something negative, he however said, “Sometime such things are unpredictable but it happened. But they had not come with any bad intention, they only came to submit a memorandum and yes they also should be careful as it is curfew time and they should not take risk in the future.”
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, the protesters under the banned of “voice of the people” said that the chief minister has assured to take up the matter relating to the demand for relocation of the Harijans from Sweepers’ Lane.
They also said they would immediately go back and convey to the other people who are agitating in Motphran area on the assurance given by the chief minister.