Curfew relaxed in Meghalaya district



Shillong: Curfew was relaxed for three hours in parts of West Garo Hills district in Meghalaya Thursday, two days after it was imposed in the wake of communal tension, an official said.

The curfew was imposed in Phulbari, Rajabala, Bhaitbari, Singhimari and adjoining areas bordering Assam's Dhubri district Tuesday night to foil communal clashes between tribal Garos and Muslims after some people circulated text messages having a communal flavour.

Curfew relaxation began at 9 am, Pravin Bakshi, the deputy commissioner of West Garo Hills district, said.

"The night was peaceful and there were no reports of any untoward incidents in the curfew-bound areas," he added.

The district authorities have also issued an advisory to all legislators, MPs and political leaders to stay away from the affected areas till the situation is brought to normal.

The authorities also warned "mischief makers" that they would be booked under the Meghalaya Maintenance of Public Order and Meghalaya Preventive Detention Act if found instigating communal tension.

Bakshi said the district authorities will be monitoring the law-and-order situation during the curfew relaxation period and a decision for further relaxation will be taken accordingly.

The district administration has stepped up security and is engaged in meetings with people.

"Peace meetings have been organised at places where there have been misunderstandings and to restore normalcy," Bakshi said.

IANS