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Shutdown disrupts normal life in Imphal East in Manipur

By The Assam Tribune

Imphal, Feb 27 (IANS): A 48-hour shutdown called on Saturday by an organisation demanding that a new district be carved out of Imphal East affected normal life in the area.

No vehicle has been plying along National Highway 37 (linking this city to Assam) and some other roads in the Imphal East area due to the shutdown called by the Jiribam Districthood Demand Committee.

Shops and commercial centres remain closed. There was thin attendance in government offices and other establishments.

The Committee is demanding that Jiribam, currently a sub-division of Imphal East district, be given the status of a fully-fledged district. It has vowed to launch various forms of agitations until the new district is created.

Imphal East is one of the nine districts of Manipur which has a territory of 22,327 sq km.

Though the State government has said it agreed to the demand in principle, it has not yet taken any steps in that direction.

There have also been complaints that some tribal areas have been included in the projected territory of the proposed district, which the Committee denies.

Several Naga organisations have been saying that the proposed district should not encompass any Naga village which is an impossible task since the Naga and the Kuki villages are located in close proximity in the hill areas of the State.

Meanwhile, students' bodies and other groups have condemned an alleged act of arson on Thursday targeting the Jiribam College. Local residents managed to douse the raging fire before much damage.

There has also been a growing demand for the upgrade of Jiribam College, the only one in the sub-division, to a government college.

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