Tawang police firing leaves 2 dead

Tawang police firing leaves 2 dead

Tawang police firing leaves 2 dead

Known as the abode of peace and the seat of the famous Gaden Namgyal Lhatse, the largest Buddhist monestary in the country, the sleepy town of Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh turned volatile on Monday when at least two protesters were killed in police firing.

The police took the drastic action to control a mob which was protesting against the arrest of a noted anti-mega dam activist and Buddhist monk Lama Lobsang Gyatso.

According to official sources, indefinite curfew has been clamped in Tawang and the army has been called in to conduct flag march.

Locals alleged that there is another dead body which the police have not disclosed.

There are unconfirmed reports that four people including a Buddhist Lama have been killed, sources from Tawang added.

Gyatso has been heading Save Mon Region Federation (SMRF), a group opposed to hydropower projects in Tawang region.

He was arrested on Thursday afternoon based on a complaint that he had defamed the Abbot of the Tawang Monastery, Guru Tulku Rinpoche, the spiritual head of the monastery by questioning his nationality through an audio clip.

Rinpoche had earlier advised the Buddhist lamas to stay away from anti-mega dam protests that have been on in the region since half a decade.

Tension stated building up recently after the National Green Tribunal (NGT) suspended the Environmental Clearance (EC) granted to 780 MW Nyamjang Chhu Hydroelectric Project, by Bhilwara Group in Zemithang on eco-sensitive stretch of Tawang River basin.

On Monday, thousands of Gyatso’s supporters came to Tawang and demanded his release.

“As a police convoy taking Gyatso was passing by, his supporters broke the police barricade,” police sources added.

The police opened fire in which at least two person died, seven other received bullet injuries.
Gyasto was released on bail on Monday evening.

On April 1, supporters of local MLA Tsering Tashi took out a rally against Gyasto for his remark against Rinpoche.

A Zila Parishad member had even sent him a death threat.

Meanwhile, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Kalipho Pul directed for Peace Committees to be constituted immediately at various levels.

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