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Extortion Scourge Re-assumes Its Nuisance Value

IMPHAL, Nov 17: Following constant harassment from armed UGs who extort from the rice laden trucks stationed inside the campus of FCI godown at Dimapur with no security to protect them, trucks requisitioned by FCI for transportation of rice to Manipur are reportedly not in a position to continue with the service.

Talking to The Sangai Express, some of the drivers of the trucks requisitioned by the FCI informed that in addition to the annual taxes imposed by various UG groups including NSCN-IM, Federal Government of Nagalim (FGN), UNPC, KRA, etc, armed UGs have been coming inside the campus of FCI godown at Dimapur at any time with nobody to stop them to demand money from the drivers of the rice laden trucks waiting for escort. And if the demand is not met, then the armed UGs beat up the drivers and the handymen.

Of late, such incidents of intrusion and attack on drivers and handymen have been very frequent and today morning, some armed UGs of FGN held in captivity four handymen for not meeting their monetary demand.

It is said that around 25 trucks which have been escorted by CRPF to load rice from FCI godown, Dimapur  on Sunday last are still waiting for security escort for the return journey although the trucks have been loaded on Monday last.

Today, on hearing that some armed cadres of FGN had come to extort money from the trucks which are waiting for the escort inside the campus of FCI godown, the drivers abandoned their respective trucks and fled.

The drivers informed that the armed cadres came inside the campus after jumping over the fencing wall. Though some Home Guards are deployed for security at FCI godown, they appear to have some sort of understanding and disappeared from the godown area when the armed cadres came, they alleged.

With no Home Guard around, the intruding armed UGs started looking for the truck drivers. After no driver could be found, they took into custody the handymen.

On hearing the news, the drivers relayed the message to all concerned including the Area Manager of FCI at Imphal. Only then, the four captive handymen were released late evening.

The Home Guards who had disappeared earlier also arrived in the evening.

However, when the drivers came back at around 6.30 pm, the Home Guards chastised them for contacting Imphal over the incident.

The worried truck drivers further informed that the armed FGN cadres have also taken Rs 600 which was kept inside a bag when they searched the trucks and the driver’s cabins.

Inspite of what had happened today, the Area Manager of FCI at Imphal has reportedly directed the officials of the FCI godown at Dimapur to prevail upon the drivers and handymen of the 25 rice laden trucks which are waiting for escort to wait till tomorrow.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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