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Anti-CAB protests: Mobile Internet, SMS suspended in Meghalaya

Source: PTI
December 13, 2019 00:31 IST

IMAGE: Student bodies Krantikari Yuva Sangathan (KYS) and All India Students Association (AISA) members stage a protest against Citizenship Amendment Bill, in New Delhi, on Thursday. Photograph: PTI Photo

The Meghalaya government on Thursday withdrew mobile Internet and messaging services across the state for the next 48 hours due to deteriorating law and order situation triggered by protests over contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, officials said.

The services have been withdrawn since 5 pm Thursday.

 

The district administration in the state capital has also clamped curfew in areas under two police stations in view of the 'serious' deterioration of law and order.

The curfew will come into effect from 10 pm on Thursday night till further orders, they said.

Additional Home Secretary C V D Diengdoh issued the order after receiving inputs from the police and the district administrations across the state, they said.

'Messaging platforms like SMS, WhatsApp and social media platforms like Facebook, twitter and You Tube are likely to be used for transmission of information through pictures, videos and text that have the potential to cause civil unrest and exacerbate the law and order situation,' Diengdoh said in the order.

Burning and vandalisation of vehicles this afternoon led to chaotic situation in the Police Bazaar area and Iew Duh area, resulting in imposition of curfew in all neighbourhoods that include areas under Sadar PS and Lumdiengjri PS, District deputy commissioner M W Nongbri told PTI.

She said at least 20 localities will be affected by the curfew which will be effective from 10 pm tonight until further orders.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Thursday postponed a scheduled meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah as his cabinet colleagues failed to
reach the Guwahati Airport to board a plane to Delhi, amid curfew and violent protests in the neighbouring state.

Sangma, who had managed to reach the LGB airport, however, left for the national capital, official sources said.

"The CM had visited western Meghalaya earlier in the day. He took a separate route to reach the airport, on the outskirts of Guwahati. His cabinet colleagues, however, were stuck in violence-hit Guwahati," one of the sources said.

Sangma was scheduled to meet Shah, along with his cabinet ministers, to seek total exemption of Meghalaya from the purview of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.

"The cabinet could not reach the airport on Guwahati outskirts due to curfew and anti-CAB protests in Assam. The chief minister had to fly alone. The scheduled meeting with Amit Shah tonight has been postponed till tomorrow," an official close to the Chief Minister's Office told PTI.

The ministers will leave for Delhi on Friday by a chopper from Upper Shillong, he added.

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