Assam should stop blockade culture

Increasingly, it is becoming some kind of practice by neighbouring Assam to impose economic blockades against Arunachal whenever it wishes. Recently, in an unfortunate incident of road rage, a truck driver hailing from Assam was shot dead by a local youth in Tuting in Upper Siang district. Immediately there was backlash with mobs blocking the national highway in Silapathar, Assam, protesting against the brutal killing of the truck driver. The situation is still tense and people are avoiding the Silapathar route even now.

Though the killing was unfortunate, the Upper Siang police deserve appreciation for immediately arresting the accused. The arrest did help to calm down the situation. Further delay would have turned the situation worse. There is no doubt that the killing was barbaric and the family members of the deceased have every right to protest. But the act of blocking the national highway and harassing the people of Arunachal is not in good taste.

These kinds of incidents will further widen the gap between the people of the two states. Arunachal is dependent on Assam for connectivity. If a blockade is imposed, it not only restricts the movement of people but also disrupts the supply of goods. The ordinary citizens suffer the most in such situations. In this particular case, the police did a professional job of arresting the accused immediately. Therefore blocking the highway and harassing Arunachalee citizens was uncalled for. The people of Assam, especially those living along the boundaries, should introspect and stop this blockade culture.