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Indo-Burma border news (r)

Statement of the All Burma Students' Democratic Front (Western-Burma)  
regarding the arson of Namphalong market complex
We, the Burmese students are officially taking shelter in India, as
refugees since after military coup in September 1988. 
Now the Slorc and its followers are distributing rumour at 
Indo-Burma border that the Burmese students had involved 
in the incident of burning down the Namphalong market 
complex at the night of October 11, 1997. First of all 
we would like to explain that we absolutely did not involve in this
It is just defaming the Burmese students by the Slorc to 
create the misunderstanding between Burmese students and people 
who are residing at Indo-Burma border. All the people of Burma 
including even the Slorc know very well that the Burmese students 
are not the destructive elements and always thinking and working 
for the benefit of the people.
We strongly believe that such kind of instability at the border area is 
due to the self-centeredness and eagerness for getting upper hand 
of the Burmese military junta. The similar incident will be happened 
in future also, unless the Slorc considers for bilateral effectiveness.
It is a deeply ingrained habit of the Slorc that they will 
complain to authority of neighboring countries, as the instabilities 
of the border area is due to the presence of anti-Slorc elements 
at there. The Slorc might ask to authorities of India in coming nearest 
flag meeting not to allow the democratic forces of Burma to stay in 
border area and all instabilities there are created by them.
According to the reliable source from Burma, we came to 
know that the Burmese Military Intelligence Service had sent 
at least 20 well trained intelligence inside the territory of India 
since early 1997 to create problems between Burmese democratic 
elements and both the people and government of India. Moreover 
their intention is to destroy the unity of democratic forces of Burma
The military regime of Burma is always unpleasant with the presence 
of anti-Slorc forces at the border area; those often took place the 
anti-Slorc measures there. They always complain to the authorities 
of India in every flag meeting not to allow the Burmese students 
living at the border area like Moreh.
We notice that it is good chance for the Slorc to create 
misunderstanding between Burmese students and government 
of India by accusing us as the culprits of arson of Namphalong 
market complex and instability at the border area. 
We strongly hope that the people and government of a biggest 
democratic country like India will not accept the unreasonable 
accusation and complaint of the universal liar like Slorc.
Regional Working Group
ABSDF (Western-Burma)     
Flag meet at Moreh cancelled
Moreh, Oct 15:  There was a meeting between 
authorities of India and Myanmar at Tamu today to 
discuss the situation arising out of burning of Market 
Complex of Myanmar's Namphalong.
The meeting as held at the local office of the 
State Law and Order Restoration Council, SLORC 
from 11 AM to 1 PM.
The Indian delegation was led by Deputy Commissioner 
of Chandel, S. Budhachandra Singh and SP Manglemjao 
Singh while Myanmarese team was led by Tamu district 
SLORC chairman, Lt. Col. Soe Tint.
In the meeting the Myanmarese delegation alleged that 
the arson and firing were carried out by 20 to 30 persons 
and eight of the culprits were Tamils.
They also said three persons sustained bullet injuries in 
the incident. One junior immigration official and one 
Municipal staff, who sustained injuries, had now been fully 
recovered. The other injured, a shopkeeper whose
condition had deteriorated had been shifted to Mandalay 
for further treatment, they said.
The district Slorc chairman visited Namphalong super
Market in the morning to assess the damage. According 
to the Myanmarese delegation goods worth about 
Rs. 2 crores were destroyed in the fire.. The fire also 
reduced 365 stalls to ashes.
Later in the day the deputy commissioner Chandel held 
a meeting with police, Army, BSF (Border Security Force)
and CRPF ( Central Reserve Police Force) officials to review 
the situation in Moreh.
Meanwhile, the proposed flag meeting between India and
Myanmarese authorities scheduled for tomorrow to discuss 
the situation following the burning of Myanmarese market 
Complex at Namphalong has been cancelled, adds our staff
reporter in Imphal.
The deputy commissioner of Chandel, S. Budhachandra Singh said
representatives of State Law and Order Restoration Council, 
Slorc (Burmese military junta) who came from Saggaing division
of the country had returned back from Tamu, the venue of the 
proposed meeting.
According to the police, there was no report of any untoward
incident at Moreh and nearby border area during the past 
48 hours. However, the security forces and the police are 
fully on alert. The incident had severely affected the border
Business community at Moreh has appealed to the Myanmarese
authorities to open the border as usual to allow free 
movement of traders. Myanmar had sealed the border 
completely following the incident. 
Imphal Free Press, Manipur
Moreh JAC to observe bandh today, relaxation for vehicles
Moreh, Oct 16:          The Joint Action Committee
of Moreh town will observe a peaceful Moreh bandh
tomorrow in protest against the death of C Karuppaia, 
who was found shot dead at Moreh on October 12 morning.
The bandh will begin at 5 am and will end 5 PM. 
Essential service, buses and other vehicles will be  
exempted from the bandh, JAC said.
The JAC is demanding Rs. 10,000 as ex-gratia the 
death of Karuppaia and the two missing Meiteis (Manipuri).
Representatives of the JAC and district officials led by 
DC S. Budhachandra Singh held a meeting here this morning.
In the meeting the JAC strongly protested the charge that 
the deceased Tamil and other Tamils were involved in the 
burning of Manphalonf market shed.
The Myanmese authority is understood to have told authorities
at Moreh that identity of an India nationals who were involved 
in the arson had been established. They also charged that the 
deceased was involved in the incident.
President of Tamil Sangam, Moreh, K. Monoharan strongly
denied involvement of Tamils in the Namphalong incident. 
He also said the Tamil boy who was found dead was a habitual
drunkard and also mentally unsound.
He also described the report that six persons were 
killed in the Namphalong incident as baseless.
The president said at Moreh wanted to have good relationship
with Myanmar.
He also said following he closure of the border lobourers 
and small-traders here were on the verge of starvation as
prices had soared beyond common men's means.
For instance the price of rice has gone up to Rs. 28 per Choi.
Before the incident it was only Rs. 20. There is also
scarcity of chicken, fish and mutton.
Source said Myanmarese authorities told its India 
counterpart that the market shed would soon be 
constructed and sought the cooperation of the 
later. They also said the border would be sealed 
for one month.
A JAC member and a representative of the Hill Tribal
Council said the dead body was abandoned at Canan Veng.
He however, did not say anything about the charge that 
Kukis were involved in the incident
Imphal Free Press, Manipur