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NE youths vows to fight terror
Correspondent SHILLONG, NOV 1:
Published on 2 Nov. 2008 12:36 AM IST
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Even as the hoi-polloi in Assam are struggling to come to terms following the string of blasts, several youths vowed to fight violence unitedly during the Shillong Carnival. “Whatever has happened in Assam has to be taken up as a challenge, we cannot be cowed down, but join hands and fight together,” former Meghalaya Home Minister and Chairman of Meghalaya Tourism Development Forum (MTDF) RG Lyngdoh said. With security agencies identifying many areas as vulnerable to terror attacks following the Assam bomb blast, Shillong witnessed less vehicular and human traffic. Yet, sizeable number of people came out from their homes and witnessed the Carnival parade, even as an old lady screamed at the passing parade “Enjoy life”. Similarly, Karnesh Rai, a tourist taxi driver from Guwahati, who is still struggling to come to terms with the blast in Guwahati said, “It’s so nice in here to see young people enjoying life”. Rai was waiting for the parade to clear at Police Bazaar point, so that he could drive back passengers to Guwahati. “I don’t want to go back, I am scared,” he said MTDF’s week-long Shillong Carnival had students attending from across the northeastern states taking part in it. The Carnival paraded the thoroughfares of Shillong city before culminating at Polo grounds in colorful traditional costumes. The Shillong Carnival is part of the annual Autumn Festival. “We are together with our brothers and sisters of Assam. We cannot be weak at this moment, but stand united and fight together,” Suresh Thokchom, President of Manipur Students Union, Shillong Unit said. Sashinungla Ao, a degree student from Nagaland said youths should take up the challenge of taking responsibility to ensure peace and prosperity. “We want to leave behind our differences and march ahead together,” she said. Sudhir Debarma, adviser to Tripura Students federation added, “we must stand together to fight violence.” Police strengthen infiltration gates The Meghalaya Police has strengthened its infiltration check-gates in various transit points of the state to check movement of people entering the state from Assam, a police official said today. The strengthening of the infiltration check-gates bore positive results with the arrest of eight Bangladeshi nationals last night at Byrnihat, bordering Assam. The arrested persons claimed to be settlers of Maligoan in Assam and were proceeding towards Lumshnong in Jaintia Hills district, police said. Their arrest assumed significance in the wake of the ongoing investigation into the serial blast in Assam, which claimed the lives of more than 70 people and over 300 injured. In fact, not only the government machinery, even the two student’s bodies - Khasi Student’s Union and Garo Student’s Union stepped up their vigil to detect suspected Bangladeshi nationals. More than 400 Bangladeshi nationals were detected by KSU from different areas of Khasi and Jaintia Hills last month.

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