AAMSU, NESO demand development of NH-53 as lifeline of Manipur
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, June 30 2010: While hectic efforts are on to make the NH-53 as lifeline of the state, some underground outfits started pressing vehicles plying the highway to pay "tax", alleged leaders of the All Assam Manipuri Students' Union (AAMSU) and North East Manipuri Students' Organisation (NESO).

Leaders of the two students' bodies camping in Imphal further alleged lagging quality control in the ongoing road improvement works on the NH-53 while talking to reporters on the experiences they got while travelling on this section of the NH-53 today.

Representatives of the two bodies arrived at Imphal to press their certain demands to the Manipur government briefed reporters at a press conference held at Manipur Press Club.

They were about to submit a memorandum containing their demands to the Chief Minister.

However, as the Chief Minister is out of station now, they submitted the same to the SPF spokesperson, minister, N Biren.

The five member team is led by president of AAMSU, L Surendra.

Former president, S Nandakishore, senior volunteer M Robindro, Th Nandamohon and NESO president, O Maniton were part of the team.

In the memorandum, they submitted, the two students' bodies demanded improvement of NH-53, Manipur government pressing the Centre to extend the East-West Super Highway from Gujarat to Silchar upto Imphal, construction of a Manipur Bhavan at Silchar, early completion of construction works of Guwahati Manipur Bhavan and shifting of Manipur godowns from Dimapur to Silchar etc.

They also demanded revival of inner line permit system in Manipur and frame a cultural policy to preserve the identities of Manipuris residing outside the state.

President of NESO, O Maniton speaking to reporters observed that the present improvement works on the stretch of the NH-53 by BRO and PWD lack quality control.

The stretch of the portion from Kaiphundai to Nungba has been completed but only one way traffic.

Blacktopping is also very thin so that it breaks when 10 tones weight vehicle move over in total contrast with the government revelation of 30% completion of converting into double lane.

Not even 10% of the improvement work is completed, he added.

Observing that the six-lane West-East Corridor Super Highway from Gujarat to Silchar of Assam should be extended upto Manipur, he said the same has been stopped at Silchar.

Manipur government should press the Centre for extending the same upto Imphal.

If this six-lane highway is extended upto Imphal, there would no problem in ferrying essential commodities by trucks to Imphal from Silchar, he said reiterating their demands for shifting of godowns from Dimapur to Silchar.

The need for opening oil depot to Jiribam and construction of a cold storage there also expressed.