Shillong, June 9: The proscribed Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) has decided to go ahead with the 24-hour shutdown beginning 6pm tomorrow after the ban on rat-hole coal mining was not lifted by the National Green Tribunal here today.
The outfit had last week warned of a 24-hour shutdown in Khasi-Jaintia hills if the tribunal did not provide any relief. “The adamant attitude of the NGT regarding the ban on rat-hole mining shows that it is not at all concerned for the people of Hynniewtrep who would suffer enormously by this sudden decision,” HNLC publicity secretary Sainkupar Nongtraw posted on Facebook.
However, till the filing of this report, no separate intimation was given to media houses about the shutdown.
The government convened a meeting at the state secretariat this evening to take stock of the situation and review preparedness to deal with it.
An official communiqué said representatives from central government offices and banks and senior government officials attended the meeting.
The government urged all the employees of central and state governments and public sector undertakings to co-operate and ensure smooth and orderly functioning of their offices.
“Failure on the part of government officials to attend office would be treated as unauthorised absence and attract action as per the rules and orders laid down by the government,” the communiqué stated.
Additional chief secretary Barkos Warjri briefed the meeting about the measures taken to maintain peace and ensure the safety and security of all citizens, including government and public sector employees.
State director-general of police P.J.P. Hanaman spoke on the arrangements made by the police to ensure law and order and provide security to all. He said the preparations would be comprehensive in view of the greater availability of security forces.