HITO members
HITO members stopped by the police from attending assembly session

Shillong: A small drama ensued on Wednesday when the local police stopped some members of pressure group Hynniewtrep Integrated Territorial Organisation (HITO) who were on their way to the Meghalaya Assembly.

According to reports, HITO members had been granted permission to attend the Autumn session of the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly on September 15. They also intended to interact with the MLAs, if possible.

However, when the group was on their way to the assembly on Wednesday, they were stopped at Harrison Bridge in Shillong city.

A police officer said they were only following orders, as directed by the Deputy Commissioner, who has been asked by the Speaker to stop the HITO members.

HITO president Donbok Dkhar wrote to the deputy commissioner, seeking a clarification after the incident.

In his letter to the DC, Dkhar wrote that HITO had legally obtained 20 passes to attend the Autumn Session of the state Assembly on the September 15. “However, for no rhyme or reason, we were stopped on the way at Harrison Bridge by your magistrates accompanied by police. Despite producing the passes as law abiding citizens, we were firmly prevented from proceeding further by police, who claimed that they were only following your orders,” said Dkhar.

He added that preliminary enquiry by HITO reveals that even the DC was acting upon instructions from the Assembly Commissioner Secretary, who, in turn, said it was under the Speaker’s direction.

Dkhar asked if it was true then does that mean that the administration has no say in permitting peaceful and silent means of protest in a democracy. 

The organisation has further stated that they intend to pursue their desire of visiting the Assembly and will apply for permission from the Speaker once again.

Also read: No salary for 3 months: SSA teachers protest in Shillong

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