Tura, June 10: A placard says “Enough crime, enough militancy. Time to do away with them”as thousands of people came out here to take part in a silent procession to condemn the Raja Ronggat incident where 35-year-old Jospin M. Sangma was brutally killed as her four minor children and husband watched helplessly.
Jospin was killed by the GNLA on the evening of June 3. The outfit’s political secretary, Bikdot Marak, and “area commander” of Chokpot, Jangjang Marak, had claimed responsibility for the act.
In two separate press communiqués, the outfit had branded her a “police informer”.
People from all walks of life today assembled at Chandmari playground to pray for the bereaved family and condemn the inhumane act of the militants. At least 3,000 people raised their voice in unison saying, “Let us build peace and harmony.”
The peaceful demonstration was spearheaded by Mother’s Union and supported by several NGOs and Church organisations.
Bishop of Tura, Reverend Father Andrew Marak, also took part in the procession to show his solidarity along with many eminent personalities of the town.
“The militants have put our community to shame. We condemn their act. They should stop their cowardly acts. Meghalaya government should ensure that this is to put to an end,” said Viola Sonatchi B. Sangma, former chairperson of Meghalaya Public Service Commission.
Former pro-vice chancellor of ICFAI University Meghalaya, Milton Sangma, said: “Random killings, extortions and kidnappings should be stopped. The violence must end. It is hurting the people. The gun culture should stop once and for all. The outfits should accept the clarion call of the government and come forward for negotiation.”
“New Delhi should intervene at this hour of crisis and appoint an officer to hold dialogue with the militants. People cannot live in constant fear anymore. Enough is enough.”
The silent procession passed through the main thoroughfare of the town and culminated at Chandmari playground.
People shouted: “Insane atrocities in the name of motherland does not carry any weight.”
The situation has forced the people to demand army deployment.
“Army is the only option in Garo hills now. People may have to suffer a bit but all these ANVC-B, GNLA, UALA, ATF, ANLA will be finished off and we will get permanent peace,” said young Togan Nengminza.
Shops and business establishments downed their shutters from 3pm to 5pm as a mark of condemnation.
Another resident, Sinnednud Sangma, said: “Killing a fellow human being for whatever reasons is no doubt highly condemnable. And there is a spate of killings which is alarming. The need of the hour is to find the solution to all these problems by urging leaders, Church and NGOs to come together and work towards restoration of peace. Failure to act in time may lead to even greater uncertainties in days to come.”