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Tight Security in Shillong
Correspondent/PTI SHILLONG, JUN 11:
Published on 11 Jun. 2009 11:33 PM IST
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Security has been beefed up in Meghalaya’s state capital Shillong in view of Wednesday’s protest march against the unconditional release of Congress leader Thomas Nongtdu, who is alleged to be the prime conspirator in the recent high-profile Shillong jailbreak. “Security has been tightened up in and around the city to prevent any untoward incident during tomorrow’s protest march by the NGOs,” Superintendent of Police LB Rapthap said. Over a dozen of NGOs under the banner of Steering Committee Against Murder of Democracy (SCAMD) has called for public meeting at Umsohsun Taxi stand and then proposed to march to the Chief Minister’s secretariat. United Democratic Party (UDP) and Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement (KHNAM), allies of the ruling Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance (MUA) government, also expressed concern over the recent jailbreak. “We want the government to take severe action against those involved in the release of Nongtdu and the lapses in the jail security system, should own moral responsibility and step down from their respective posts,” SCAMD leader Samuel Jyrwa said. Nongtdu, a coal-baron and known financer of the Congress party in Meghalaya, was arrested on June 4 after Evatiplang Kharkongor; the paramour of slain jailbreak ringleader Fullmoon Dhar confessed to the police that Nongtdu had funded Fullmoon for the jailbreak. Kharkongor, who has been remanded to judicial custody, was arrested on June 1 on charges of aiding and abetting the recent jailbreak. On May 31 morning, seven Under Trial Prisoners (UTPs) escaped from the Shillong district jail after overpowering a guard on duty and fired in the air to scare the others. Fullmoon, however, was shot dead a day later in an encounter with the special police team at Um-Pawai area in coal-rich district of Jaintia Hills. The government had already suspended the Superintendent of the Shillong Jail Paize Warjri, jailor Denis Warkhyllew and other six warders for their dereliction of duty during the recent jailbreak. Of the six suspended jail staffs, five were arrested on charges of aiding and abetting the high-profile jailbreak by smuggling of arms inside the jail and dereliction of duty.

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