Manipur’s lifeline blocked, Petrol selling at Rs 250 per litre in Imphal
The price of petrol in grey market has soared to Rs 250 per litre after all the retail outlets in Manipur have closed down following the indefinite economic blockade imposed by United Naga Council (UNC) in Naga inhabited areas of national highways.
The IOC depot in Imphal said it has zero stock of petrol, while the diesel stock is also on the brink of running out. All retail outlets have closed down across the state since Tuesday.
School van services, which is the biggest mode of school students’ transportation in the state, has been forced to ceased on Friday due to petrol scarcity and resulted in many students forced to remain at home.
“We have stopped our students’ transport services from today onward as we are unable to get enough petrol to ferry our vehicles. Many parents urge us to resume the service but, we have no other option but to stop,” Joykumar Meitei, a member of All Manipur Students’ Transporters Association (AMSTTA), told Narada News.
“We’ll start our service only after the government provide us enough petrol. The actual price is only Rs 66 while it has raised up from Rs 200 to Rs 300 per litre in the grey markets, which we cannot afford,” Meitei added.
Some schools in the Imphal city have declared holiday as school authorities are also unable to provide school buses. Life of the people in state has also been badly affected as the prices of other essential commodities have also skyrocketed at Khwairamband Bazaar and many other markets across the state.
“This year’s school calender has been affected by many issues, including the Inner Line Permit (ILP) demand protests. As van services are now on halt, I have to take my children to school. Blockades is not new in the state, but, I don’t know what the government is planning to tackle such issues,” said Sophia Chanu, a resident of Iroisemba in Imphal West.
“Schools have also started their annual exams and there is no petrol in retail outlets and even in grey markets also. I have only 2 litles of petrol left in my scooter, so I am worried how I would take my kids to school if we don’t get petrol in next few days,” Chanu added.
The United Naga Council (UNC) has been imposing an indefinite economic blockade on the national highways in Manipur since November 1. The UNC and other Naga frontal organisations have been imposing the blockade and the ban on all national projects in Naga terrirorites of the state against the move of the state government to upgrade Sadar Hills and Jiribam sub-division to the status of full fledged districts.