Violence erupted after the death of the ex-militant; Curfew imposed to ease the ambience was relaxed on Thursday.
The Shillong district of Meghalaya suffered vandalism and arson on August 15 2021, after the police encounter of ex-militant Cheristerfield Thangkhiew, the former leader of the former Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council(HNLC).
He was killed in a meeting during a raid at his residence in Shillong on Friday.
Thangkhiew’s death has invoked massive outraged public, who have dubbed it a fake encounter and a violation of human rights by the police.
At night angry protesters threw petrol bombs at chief Minister Conard Sangma’s residence in Shillong.
On Sunday, as hundreds joined Thangkhiew’s funeral procession, incidents of sporadic violence, including arson, vandalism and stone pelting, erupted in Shillong.
Masked men dressed in black hijacked a police vehicle, drove it around the city waving flags and brandishing, and later set it ablaze.
The Curfew was imposed in Shillong, and mobile internet stopped in at least four districts of Meghalaya in East Khasi Hills, West Khasi Hills, Southwest Khasi Hills and Ri-Bhoi.
Later on, Curfew was relaxed for 12 hours on Thursday from 5 am to 5 pm, the official said. Shops selling essential items have been permitted to open till 4 pm, and bank transactions at 3 pm.
Government offices and private institutions have been admitted to work till 4 pm. Mobile internet services were revived on Wednesday night.
Who was Cherishterfield Thangkhiew?
Thangkhiew,57, was one of the founding figures of Meghalaya’s separatist movement that voes for a separate homeland for its tribal population. He is reported to have been one of the founding members of HNLC.
In 2004, he left Meghalaya for Bangladesh and did not return to India, Till he surrendered before Meghalaya Deputy CM Prestone Tynsong in 2018.
The police truth:
Police say Thangkhiew was killed in “retaliatory firing ” during a raid at home in Shillong, alleging that Thangkhiew had wielded a knife and attacked one police personnel.
The raid happened because he was under suspicion about a series of IED blasts in the state. The charge was in which Thangkhiew was killed c reportedly carried out by a combined team of East Jaintia Hills and East Khasi Hills Police.
Statement by political leaders:
The state’s Home Minister, Lahkmen Rymbui, said he is resigning to bring the truth out. He urged the Chief Minister of state to conduct a judicial probe into the shooting of Thangkhiew.
At the press conference on Monday, Sangma said that he had received Rymbui’s letter but had not decided yet. The cabinet announced that they would constitute a judiciary enquiry into the death.
It also announced to form a “Peace Committee” to be governed by ministers, communities heads and religious organisations, etc.
Sangma also created a separate Security and Law and Order Subcommittee, which will look into aspects of law and order.