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Supreme court to hear plea linked to Manipur blockade

The Supreme Court Monday agreed to hear a plea seeking directions to the central and Manipur governments to prevent a repeat of the just-concluded over three-month blockade of the national highway running through the state.

An apex court bench of Justice G.S. Singhvi and Justice S.J. Mukhopadhaya said it would hear the plea Tuesday along with a case involving the rail and road blockade by protestors from the Jat community in Jind district of Haryana earlier this year.

Members of the Jat and other dominant communities from Jind had blocked the highways and railway tracks in January in the wake of the prosecution of people from their community for alleged involvement in an arson attack on Dalit settlements in Mirchpur in Hisar district last year.

The petition on Manipur was moved by former Uttar Pradesh police chief Prakash Singh seeking directions to the central and state governments that they should take steps to ensure that there was no recurrence of such a blockade.

The petition said that if in case such blockade reoccurred then appropriate and effective steps should be taken to clear the highways in the shortest possible time.

The petition was filed by the former DGP in the third week of November in the wake of blockade of national highway by protesters demanding conversion of the Kuki majority Sadar hills area of Senapati district of Manipur into a full-fledged district.

The nearly three-month-long economic blockade of the national highway passing through Manipur started Aug 1 and was lifted Nov 28, following an assurance by the state that Sadar hills area of Senapati district be converted into a district.

Prakash Singh said that his main concern was that people of Manipur were facing hardships because of the shortage of essential commodities and their spiralling prices on account of the blockade of the highway.



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