[ Prafulla Kaman ]
PASIGHAT, Nov 19: Tension has been simmering in the interstate boundary areas of Lower Siang and East Siang districts, bordering Dhemaji district in Assam, over the killing of a truck driver from Assam in Ningging, in Upper Siang district, on 14 November.
The incident sparked public protest in Likabali area, bordering Silapathar in Assam. The protesters, who are staging a road blockade on NH 15, are stopping passing Arunachal-bound oil tankers and other goods trucks for the last four days.
Supply of fuel and other essential items to central Arunachal districts is on halt due to the protest, causing shortage of petrol, diesel and construction materials in the region.
Several protesters blocked the highway at the Sili portion on Thursday morning, but the police and paramilitary jawans deployed by the Dhemaji district administration dispersed them and cleared the roadblock.
However, the truck drivers are refusing to ferry fuel and other goods to Arunachal’s districts until the administrative officers of the state ensure the safety and security of the truckers.
Meanwhile, a meeting of the DCs and SPs of Upper Subansiri, West Siang, Leparada, Upper Siang, Shi-Yomi, Siang, East Siang and West Siang districts has been fixed at Pasighat on Friday to discuss the prevailing law and order situation. The DC and the SP of Dhemaji district have been invited to attend.
The Lower Siang DC in a faxed message said that the state’s home commissioner has given approval to the scheduled meeting and passed instruction to defuse the tension along the boundary.
It may be recalled that one Dhurba Pathak (21), a truck driver from Silapathar, was shot dead by one Telung Panyi (33) in Ningging after a heated argument in a road rage incident.
The accused took out his 12 bore SBBL gun and fired at the driver, who later succumbed to head injuries.
The police have arrested the accused and remanded him to judicial custody. A case under Sections 302 IPC, r/w Section 27 (1)/29 of the Arms Act has been registered at the Tuting police station against the accused.