Kwatha Village Authority Set To Intensify Stir

IMPHAL, Feb 20: The Kwatha Village Authority has threatened to launch more intense forms of agitation if the ongoing indefinite bandh along Imphal-Moreh section of NH 39 fails to evoke the Government and relevant authorities to take up some positive measures at the earliest.

The Kwatha Village Authority has been imposing an indefinite bandh along Imphal-Moreh road since February 17 midnight demanding proper demarcation of disputed area of around 60 hectares which is being claimed by both Kwatha village and Leibi village.

Consequent upon the ongoing bandh, all transport services between Imphal and Moreh have been suspended which in turn has led to cessation of all trade and business activities between Imphal and Moreh.

However, medical service and religious functions are exempted from the purview of the bandh.

Speaking to media persons at Manipur Press Club here this afternoon, Kwatha Village Authority chairman Angom Amu said that Kwatha village and Leibi village have been contending for an area of 60 hectares located between the two villages which is locally known as Kebung Ching since 2003.

With a view to end the disputes, Kwatha Village Authority filed a complaint at Imphal West Fast Track Court on April 8, 2003.

Acting on the complaint, the court issued an order which prohibited Leibi villagers from entering Kebung Ching.

The same court issued another order in 2009 directing the Chandel DC and other relevant officials to make a proper demarcation of the disputed area without any delay.

But the then DC and other officials failed to comply with the court order.

Sensing that the prolonged dispute between the two villages might result in unwanted incidents, the Kwatha Village Authority filed an appeal at Gauhati High Court.

Again the High Court instructed the DC and relevant officials for immediate demarcation of the disputed area.

As per the instruction of the High Court, the concerned SDC, SDPO and Settlement officials went to the disputed site for land measurement on November 10 last year.

But Leibi villagers not only objected the land measurement exercise but also threatened the officials by brandishing all sorts of weapons.

After this incident, the Moreh ADC issued another notification for demarcation of the site on February 10 this year. But unfortunately, no demarcation was done on the specified date. Instead, it was put off to March 9.

Even as restrictions have been imposed under Section 144 of CrPC in the disputed area since October 21, Leibi villagers have been openly defying the restrictions by felling trees and engaging themselves in terraced cultivation.

Saying that such activities of the Leibi villages have all the potential to intensify conflict between the two villages, Angom Amu sought immediate attention of the Government for demarcation of the disputed area in order to avoid any unwanted incident

Angom Amu also demanded that no one should be allowed access to the disputed area until a proper demarcation is done.

In case, the ongoing bandh fails to move the Government, the Kwatha villagers are all prepared to launch more intense forms of agitation.

The Government should be held solely responsible for an untoward incident resulting from the intensified agitation, Angom Amu cautioned.

(Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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