Unidentified gunmen have again attacked oil tankers and assaulted drivers along National Highway 37, the Imphal-Jiri road in Manipur.
In response to the incident, the All Manipur Petroleum Products Transporters Association (AMPPTA) and All Manipur Petroleum Products Drivers Association (AMPPDA) initiated a steering wheel down strike until adequate security was provided to oil tankers.
Additionally, they decided to close the Malom Oil Depot and all oil pumps until negotiations are conducted to address the matter.
According to L Somendro, president of AMPPTA, the incident occurred on Monday evening as 169 oil tankers were travelling towards Imphal along National Highway 37.
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Unidentified perpetrators fired gunfire at two oil tankers with registration numbers AS-01-GC-3847 and AS-25-BC-5299 in the Nungba region at about 8:30 p.m. Somendro also expressed disappointment that, despite repeated demands, the government has failed to provide enough protection for vehicles travelling along the national route, and that events such as extortion by unknown miscreants are becoming more regular.
Speaking to the media at Keithelmanbi, Mukta Nongbri, secretary of AMPPDA, emphasised that they have frequently requested assistance from the Manipur chief secretary to ensure protection for drivers who risk their lives to move commodities along national routes. He decried the assault on drivers and questioned who would be held accountable if something unpleasant happened to them.
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