Shillong (Meghalaya), Oct 28 : A rally in Shillong on Friday demanding filling up of vacant Meghalaya government posts turned violent when the participants attacked passers-by with sticks and damaged a few vehicles, officials said.
Among those assaulted included 2 journalists of vernacular news organisations .
The president of Federation of Khasi Jaintia and Garo People (FKJGP), Dundee Khongsit, who organised the rally expressed regret at the violence and apologised for the attack on the media person.
The FKJGP is demanding that vacant state government posts be filled immediately.
The procession was escorted by police but still, some participants attacked passers-by at Khyndailad junction and Dhanketi area of the city, officials said.
Sensing trouble, several shops along the route of the rally were ordered shut by the authorities.
Police said they have registered two cases in this connection. “We have registered two cases in connection with the violence that took place today,” East Khasi Hills SP (City) Vivek Syiem said in a press statement .
The FKJGP president expressed regret at the violence that had taken place and apologised for the attack on media person.
“I am sad and I seek an apology for the violent attack on a media person. Today is not the time to showcase our strength and power but if the government does not resolve the issues of the youth, this is the beginning… ,” he said.
Meanwhile, the authorities in the state capital issued show cause notice to the leaders of the Federation of Khasi Jaintia and Garo People organisation for failing to abide by the conditions necessary for holding the rally.
“We have issued a show cause notice to the organisation for violating the conditions necessary to conduct a public rally,” East Khasi Hills district deputy commissioner told PTI.
The deputy commissioner said the police have also been directed to take actions against those involved in the violent attack that caused minor injuries to a few pedestrian and two-wheeler riders.
Meanwhile ,Meghalaya Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong on Friday asked the leaders of the Federation of Khasi, Jaintia and Garo People (FKJGP) to “control” its members after the outfit’s rally turned violent in Shillong.
The outfit carried out a rally against unemployment, which later turned violent with some people seen assaulting passers-by and also two journalists who were recording the incidents. The miscreants were seen chasing people and assaulting them with flags made of bamboo poles.
Speaking to the reporters, the Deputy Chief Minister said that the government has instructed the police authority to make sure that there is no law and order problem.
The Meghalaya Editors’ and Publishers’ Association (MEPA) strongly denounced the highhandedness by a group of youths on two journalists Riba Mary Suchiang of Batesi TV and Evangelist Khongwar of U Mawphor who were performing their duty during the rally on unemployment organised by the FKJGP in the city on Friday (28-10-2022).
The fact that the group of youths did not spare the two journalists even after they have identified themselves as journalists is something that is uncalled for and deplorable.
MEPA therefore urges the organisers of the rally to immediately identify the persons involved in the incident and take them to task as per law and also to apologise to the two journalists for the highhandedness meted out to them.
With Agency inputs