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Meghalaya Rights Activist Attacked by Coal Mafia for Taking Photos of Illegal Mining

Thursday's incident is the second such attack in the state this year. In March, an RTI activist was found murdered in East Jaintia Hills district.


Updated:November 8, 2018, 9:21 PM IST
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Indian Bureau of Mines, Surveillance System, Illegal Mining
Representative image (PTI)

Shillong: Meghalaya rights activist Agnes Kharshiing suffered injuries after she was allegedly attacked by a group of people allegedly belonging to the coal mining mafia in East Jaintia Hills district on Thursday, police said.

The activist and her companion had reportedly gone to capture photographs of illegal coal mining in the district and were stopped by the miscreants on their way back, a senior police officer said.

Kharshiing, 58, was intercepted and accosted near Tuber Sohshrieh at around 1.30 pm, where she was found in an unconscious state, he said. "Kharshiing was found injured and she was rushed to the civil hospital in West Jaintia Hills district," the officer said.

Chief Minister Conrad Sangma condemned the incident and asked police to nab the culprits behind the assault. "We have issued necessary directions to the police and the district administration to investigate the matter and arrest those behind the attack," Sangma said in a statement.

He said violence in any form will not be tolerated and the government will take all necessary steps to ensure that those behind the attack are brought to justice. The activist's companion also received injuries in the attack and she is undergoing treatment at the hospital, police said.

Kharshiing has been referred to the North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences for further treatment, where her condition is being evaluated, the officer said.

The opposition Congress has also denounced the incident and urged the administration to strictly deal with those behind the attack. Thursday's incident is the second such attack in the state this year. In March, an RTI activist was found murdered in East Jaintia Hills district.

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