Other States

Meghalaya RTI activist attacked, critical

Suspected coal mafia in Meghalaya's East Jaintia Hills district attacked RTI and anti-graft activist Agnes Kharshiing on Thursday, leaving her in a critical condition.

Ms. Kharshiing, who is the president of the Shillong-based Civil Society Women’s Organisation, sustained head injuries and was taken to a hospital near Tuber Sohshrieh, about 120 km from State capital Shillong. She was rushed to the North East Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences in Shillong as her condition deteriorated.

The police said a group had attacked Ms. Kharshiing and fellow activist Anita Sangma around noon when she visited the site to document illegal coal mining despite a ban by the National Green Tribunal.

Ms. Kharshiing’s brother John Kharshiing said Ms. Sangma too sustained injuries but the driver of their vehicle escaped unhurt. “I was told that they were taking pictures and filming at the illegal coal mining site when a mob suddenly appeared and attacked them,” he told The Hindu.

Dragged to jungle

Reports said the duo was dragged into a jungle while being assaulted. The attackers fled after locals arrived. Ms. Sangma managed to crawl to a nearby road and shouted for help. Ms. Kharshiing was found lying unconscious.

On Wednesday, the police had seized some coal-laden trucks in Shillong based on Ms. Kharshiing’s complaint. She has been campaigning against illegal coal mining and had exposed a number of cases of mining and transportation of coal since the NGT enforced the ban.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2022 3:17:03 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/meghalaya-rti-activist-attacked-critical/article25448152.ece

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