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Mobile internet suspended for 5 days in Manipur amid protests

Mobile internet services have been suspended for five days across Manipur, as per an official order.

According to the order issued by Special Secretary (Home) H Gyan Prakash on Saturday, some anti-social elements were using social media to transmit hate speeches, inciting the passions of the public.

The decision was taken after a vehicle was set ablaze by some people at Phougakchao Ikhang on Saturday evening. The incident has led communal tension, the order said.

The district magistrate of Bishnupur has also imposed prohibitory orders under Section 144 of the CrPC for a period of two months across the valley district, beginning Saturday evening.

Tension has been brewing in the state after All Tribal Student Union Manipur (ATSUM) imposed an indefinite “economic blockade” along the national highways passing through the hill districts on Friday morning, cutting off supplies to the valley region.

The students’ body had been demanding that the Manipur (Hill Areas) Autonomous District Council (Amendment) Bill 2021 be tabled in the assembly for greater financial and administrative autonomy of the hill region to ensure development at par with the valley areas of the state.

The indefinite blockade prompted the valley-based organisation Meitei Leepun to lock the Imphal office of ATSUM on Friday afternoon. Meitei Leepun claimed that the blockade targets the valley area of the state.

Instead, the N Biren Singh-led BJP government of the state introduced the Manipur (hill areas) district council 6th and 7th amendment bills on Tuesday, which the protesters claimed was not in line with their demands.

ATSUM was observing a total shutdown in the tribal-dominated hill of Kangpokpi and Senapati since Tuesday after the amendment bills were introduced unannounced. PTI

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