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Blockade ends after 30 hours

Jamshedpur, Dec. 30: The students of Adivasi Welfare Hostel lifted the blockade on Tata-Hata Road at Karandih today, but not before holding up traffic for hours and forcing the sub-divisional officer of Dhalbhum to rush to the spot with truce on lips.

The students, who hit the road around 9am yesterday in demand for release of 11 persons arrested for assaulting Jamshedpur circle officer, stepped up the agitation today.

If the number of protesters went up to around 300, tents sprouted in the middle of the road, leading to traffic snarls. Serpentine queues of heavy vehicles stretched on both sides of the road. Only ambulances carrying patients were allowed to pass.

Sub-divisional officer of Dhalbhum Sunil Kumar Sinha rushed to the spot in the morning to quell the protest.

The blockade was lifted after a good 30 hours following an assurance from Sinha that he would look into the matter and release the arrested if they were found to be innocent.

“The investigating officer will send a report to the chief judicial magistrate based on which necessary action will be taken,” said Sinha.

The students threatened to intensify the protest if the district administration failed to pay heed to their demands.

“Those who attacked the circle officer are moving freely while innocent people have been booked,” claimed Indra Hembram, a tribal student spearheading the agitation.

Circle officer Chandra Bhushan Singh was attacked by a group of women, who had lost the panchayat polls, at his office on December 28.

The women candidates, belonging to various panchayats, were seeking re-election.

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