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Congress blockade cuts off road link to Tripura
Published on 30 Jul. 2009 11:24 PM IST
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Road connectivity between Tripura and the rest of India was Thursday completely cut off as Congress activists blockaded the arterial Assam-Agartala national highway to protest alleged violence by ruling Left parties against opposition members. Many Congress workers were arrested for the protests. “Congress workers have organised blockades in 12 different places on the National Highway 44 in Tripura for the killing of two party men and injury to hundreds of others before and after the July 20 panchayat elections,” said Samir Ranjan Barman, president of the Tripura Pradesh Congress Committee. Barman told newsmen: “A state sponsored reign of terror, killing and arson has continued after the announcement of the panchayat election last month. Police remained inactive as Chief Minister Manik Sarkar is himself responsible for this political violence.” The Left won more than 80 percent seats in the panchayat polls. Police spokesman Nepal Das said: “More than 300 Congress agitators were arrested from different places for blockading the national highway.” “Any kind of road blockade restraining the movement of people or affecting normal traffic associated with carrying of essential commodities is not permissible under the law of the land,” a government notification said. A delegation of Congress leaders led by Barman had met Governor Dinesh Nandan Sahaya here Tuesday and demanded his intervention to stop the violence immediately. On the other hand, the ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) blamed the Congress for unleashing violence against Left party leaders and workers. CPI-M spokesman Gautam Das has alleged that more than 60 Left party leaders, workers and supporters had been injured in 33 ‘organised attacks’ by the opposition Congress in different parts of the state since July 20. “The Congress is frustrated due to poor results in the panchayat elections and is resorting to violent activities,” Das said.

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