Shillong, Sept 19: Opposition Voice of the People Party (VPP) legislator from North Shillong Adelbert Nongrum today sought to know on the action taken against the Deputy Commissioner of West Khasi Hills for granting permission for a fishing competition, which caused a traffic snarl that led to the death of a newborn baby at Pamphyrnai in Ksehkohlong village.
Moving a zero-hour notice in the Assembly, Nongrum said, “What action is being taken against the DC of West Khasi Hills for granting permission to the Fishing Competition without carrying out responsibility to ensure law and order, and against the SP of West Khasi Hills for allowing police personnel to be engaged by the organizers in prize distribution while being absent from traffic management and crowd control.”
He said on September 16, the baby had to be delivered without medical assistance inside a passenger vehicle by the pregnant mother, as their vehicle was unfortunately stuck in a 3-hour long traffic jam caused by double-side parking along the road and the unruly crowd not giving way to traffic during an unregulated fishing competition organised at Pamphyrnai lake, West Khasi Hills.
Nongrum said that the district administration was found guilty of negligence in issuing permission without taking responsibility in maintaining law and order, and District Police personnel seen being engaged in prize distribution while noticeably absent in controlling crowds and vehicles from obstructing the traffic flow on the busy Shillong-Nongstoin highway alongside the fishing competition venue.
The legislator further asked the government whether future events of fishing competitions, not just in West Khasi Hills but in other districts as well, can be put on hold till such time that a proper regulation can be made by legislation, so that no more untoward incidents should occur that put a danger to the health and safety of general public.
“Is the Government apprised of the adverse impact of the Fishing Competition, held almost every Saturday, on the weekly earnings of rural households, who are being addictively attracted to prize money of around 50 lakhs in total for each event, while having to shell out 2000 to 3000 rupees as entry fees … and of which perhaps zero amount goes towards Government revenue,” he said.