Pothashang News Service: Imphal, March 13, 2018: The Thadou Students’ Association, General Headquarters (TSA-GHQ) and TSA Mizoram Branch has vehemently condemned the barbaric act of Assam Police who mindlessly carried out a reign of terror upon innocent Mizo youths at Zophai, Bairabi in Kolasib District, Mizoram and Mizoram media persons who were there to cover the incident.
“We also condemn the high handedness of Assam’s Hailakandi district administration for utilising highly disproportionate strength of police force to commit such horrible and despicable acts on a small group of student volunteers of Mizo Zirlai Pawl (MZP) who were only trying to build a resting shed in a land within the boundary of Mizoram” said Michael Lamjathang Haokip, secretary general Thadou Students’ Association in press statement released on Monday.
The use of such a large number of armed police personnel and indiscriminate firing and brute force to stop a small group of unarmed innocent students from building the resting shed is totally uncalled for all those responsible police personnel and officers and district administrators should be punished appropriately by authorities concerned. Such ugly and uncivilized incidents have no place in a democratic country and all those responsible should be punished according to the law of the land added the press release.
The Thadou students and the whole Thadou community in Manipur, Mizoram and elsewhere stand by our Mizo blood brothers and sisters who have fallen victims of the unimaginable atrocities at the hands of the senseless Assam Police force and we join our hands with them for timely delivery of justice, added the press release.
According to a report on a webpage on February 27, the Mizo Zirlai Pawl, Mizoram’s student organisation, built a wooden rest house somewhere in the Inner Line Permit Reserved Forest, large parts of which run along the Assam-Mizoram border. The structure was meant to serve as a resting place for farmers who worked in the many paddy fields in the area.
Later that evening, however, a joint team of the Assam police and the state’s forest department demolished the structure, contending that it was built on Assam’s territory and the construction amounted to encroachment.
It has led to an escalation of tensions in the area over the last few days, with Mizo activists and journalists accusing the Assam administration of high-handedness and use of excessive force. On March 10, videos of the violence started doing the rounds. They featured Emmy C Lawbi, a journalist with the Guwahati-based news channel, News18 Assam-North East, with injuries on her back and neck.