• Heated Situation in Nagaland: Hornbill festival shut down, internet suspended

    Regional

    Kohima: Nagaland has been heated up in reaction to the firing of Assam Rifles on Saturday evening between Oting and Tiru village in Mon districts that killed 13 civilians. Further, a jawan was also killed by the agitated people.

    Reportedly, a group of daily-wage labourers from Oting village were returning home from a coal mine in a pick-up van when they were allegedly shot at by the security forces suspecting them as an insurgent group.

    The incident came to light when the villagers searched for them as they had not returned for several hours and found their bodies in the van, sources quoted.

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    Soon after the incident, the angered villagers protested, claiming that the deceased was innocent and returning from the nearby coal fields. The irked villagers damaged several security vehicles, forcing the army to use its force to control the angry mob.

    In an official statement, Assam Rifles stated, “Based on credible intelligence of likely movements of insurgent’s specific operation had been planned in the area. The incident and its aftermath are deeply regretted. The cause of the unfortunate loss of lives being investigated at the highest level and appropriate action will be taken as per the course of law.”

    Moreover, as per the statement of the Assam Rifles, one soldier died, injuring several others in the incident.

    Condemning the incident, Nagaland Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio said a high-level Special Investigative Team would probe it.

    The CM tweeted, “The unfortunate incident leading to the killing of civilians at Oting, Mon is highly condemnable. Condolences to the bereaved families & speedy recovery of those injured. High-level SIT will investigate & justice delivered as per the law of the land. Appeal for peace from all sections.”

    Union home minister Amit Shah also tweeted on Sunday morning to express his condolences to the families of the deceased.

    Meanwhile, Nagaland Governor Jagdish Mukhi stated that a special investigation team to probe the firing incident had been constituted.

    “SIT shall investigate the incident from all angles,” the official statement read.

    Moreover, the Nagaland government had suspended the internet service as a precautionary measure.

    In protest, the Konyak community has decided to abstain from further participation at the Hornbill Festival 2021, which started on December 1.

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