Ukl braves ban, rain to defeat Govt ban
Source: The Sangai Express

Ukhrul, Jun 16: The Government ban on the rally was not lifted.

There was also officially no understanding worked out at the last moment.

But thousands of people of Ukhrul came out to brave the torrential downpour and stage the UNC sponsored rally held under the theme, "Solidarity Rally Towards Naga Unification".

As the clock was about to strike 12 in the noon, thousands of Tangkhul Nagas came out on the street of Ukhrul that runs through the district headquarters pledging their support to the ongoing peace talk and demanding the unification of all Naga inhabited areas.

The rally was well organised and well chalked out.

To convenience the rallyists who were mobilised from across the district, the rally started off from two points.

One group first converged at the Pakshi Ground located near the Hundung junction on the western side of Ukhrul headquarters while another group assembled at Jessa-mi junction at the northern side.

As the minutes hand ticked towards the 12 noon mark, the rallyists started off simultaneously from the two starting points, carrying placards and banners.

The destination of the rallyists was the Tangkhul Naga Long ground, which is located at the heart of the district headquarters.

Despite the heavy down pour that lashed the hill town, the rallyists went ahead undaunted, shouting slogans demanding a peaceful solution to the Naga political problem as well Naga unification.

Talking to The Sangai Express, president of Tangkhul Katamnao Sak-long, Phaorei Lunghar said that over 20 buses and over 40 taxis were used to transport the rallyists from different parts of the district.

To a specific question, Lunghar answered that there was no understanding worked out with the district administration to stage the rally.

"We informed the DC that despite the ban and restrictions we will go ahead with the rally and that is what we did today." Efforts to meet the DC and get the administration's side of the story failed as a peon of the DC came out with the stereotypical official excuse, "The DC is not feeling well and cannot meet the press." The ADC of Ukhrul on being contacted said matter of factly that he is not the competent authority to say anything on the matter. The SP in-charge, the CO of 6th MR, could not be traced despite checking out at the MR post and the SP office.

The heavy down pour somewhat disturbed the rallyists in sticking to the queue but nevertheless there was no stopping them.

The two groups later converged at the Tangkhul Naga Long ground where the president of the TKS and Tangkhul Naga Long conveyed their messages to the people.

Later a memorandum was also submitted to the DC.

TKS president Lunghar presented a satisfied look and to a question replied that he was extremely satisfied with the turn out.

He however added that the turn out could have been heavier if they more buses at their disposal.