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Curfew relaxed for 3 hours in silk town of Sualkuchi in Assam

The indefinite curfew in the silk town of Sualkuchi in Kamrup (Rural) district will be relaxed for three hours to allow people to buy essential goods even as the Army conducted flag marches.

Sualkuchi/Guwahati: The situation in the silk town of Sualkuchi in Assam`s Kamrup (Rural) district remained tense but calm on Sunday with indefinite curfew relaxed for three hours during the day.

The curfew, which was imposed yesterday, was relaxed between 1 pm and 4 pm to facilitate people buy essential goods even as the Army conducted flag marches on the streets.

No incident of fresh trouble was reported since yesterday afternoon, official sources said adding, Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi discussed the situation of the town with Kamrup Rural Deputy Commissioner SK Roy over phone this morning.

On the directions of Gogoi, Roy held a meeting with senior officials to chalk out a plan to normalise the situation in Sualkuchi. The DC and other officials are camping in the town.

Commissioner (Lower Assam) Shabir Ahmed too visited the town today.

Prohibitory order under Section 144 of the CrPC was clamped in the town from 2 PM yesterday after the situation turned uncontrollable with anti-artificial silk protesters burning clothes from shops and pelting stones at security personnel who retaliated by firing, injuring 13 people.

The weavers were protesting since Friday against sale of clothes labelled `Assam Silk` claiming that this was artificial silk and not genuine pure Assamese golden Muga Silk and white Paat Silk unique to the state.

Six persons were picked up last night in connection with yesterday`s violence.

Meanwhile, activists of All Assam Students Union staged a demonstration in Bangshar, near Sualkuchi, protesting against yesterday`s police action and demanding immediate state-wide ban on sale of artificial silk procured from Varanasi and other places.

Opposition All India United Democratic Front (AIUDF) demanded an official inquiry into yesterday`s incident and punishment for officials and police personnel involved.

A four-member delegation of AIUDF MLAs also visited the town and sought a compensation of Rs five lakh to each person injured in yesterday`s incident.