Shillong: Security has been beefed up in the state capital in view of the two-day visit of President Pranab Mukherjee from Monday even as an outlawed tribal militant outfit, the Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC), announced a 36-hour bandh protesting the visit.
The President is scheduled to address a special session of the state Assembly on Monday and inaugurate the Innovation Club at the North Eastern Hill University (NEHU) and also attend its 21st convocation.
Top home department officials have reviewed security in the state capital, especially in and around the venues where the President would be visiting, and bomb squads and sniffer dogs have also been pressed into service to ensure round-the-clock security, a senior home department official said.
"All security arrangements have been made to avoid any untoward incident during the President`s visit," he said.
Meanwhile, HNLC publicity secretary Sainkupar Nongtraw said in a statement today that the bandh which would be enforced across the entire Khasi-Jaintia Hills region, was a "mark of political protest against the two-day visit of Mukherjee on Hynniewtrep land."
The decision in this regard was taken recently by the collective leadership of the outfit`s high command (in Bangladesh), he said.
Terming the visit of the President as an "insult" to the outfit, Nongtraw said October 21 is the 25th death anniversary of Wickliff Syiem, the founder of tribal nationalism.
Airing its support to the ongoing stir by pro-ILP activists, the HNLC condemned the "confronting attitude" of the state government on the issue.
"The Congress-led government is only compelling more youths to take up arms," Nongtraw added.