Business activities crippled in Imphal as traders down shutters to protest repeated attacks

Imphal, May 20 (IANS) Manipur capital Imphal came to a standstill on Monday as all the markets and business establishments were closed following a 24-hour total shutdown call given by the traders in protest against repeated attacks and extortion bids.

The supply of essential commodities to various districts was also disrupted as the godowns of the wholesalers at Thangal Bazaar and MG Avenue downed their shutters to extend their support to the shutdown call.

The Paona Bazaar Masjid road, which thrives during morning hours, was unusually quiet on Monday.

The retail markets at the Paona International Market and the Kaul area were also shut.

On Saturday night, a labourer from Jharkhand was killed while two others from the same state were injured in an attack by unidentified assailants in the Naoremthong area of Imphal West district. The victims are associated with a construction company.

Several other sporadic attacks by unidentified attackers on the shopkeepers and traders took place during the past few days. There were also several reports of extortion from businessmen.

The Manipur police have so far arrested seven individuals for their alleged involvement in the attacks.

Despite the swift action by the police and other law enforcement agencies, tension among the traders remains high.

On his part, local MLA Khumukcham Joykisan has warned that legal actions would be taken against those harassing the traders and other people.

The paralysis of business activities not only impacts the economy, but also highlights the deteriorating law and order in Manipur, raising concerns about the state’s stability.

–IANS

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