Kyauk Pru: Angry villagers armed with slingshots, machetes, and rods besieged Indian workers at a work station in Kyuakpru, the main area of the Shwe Gas Project in western Burma’s Arakan State, leading police to take control of the situation with warning shots.
“Nearly 60 villagers besieged the KP-14 work station of the Indian workers in Krattain Village in Kyaukpru Township and first attacked the guards of the station with their slingshots on 20 March. As their attacks were getting intense, the local police had to come to the scene and disperse the crowd with gunshots fired into the sky,” said a local youth who witnessed the incident.
U Thandar Maung, a spoke person from the office of the Rakihne Nationalities Development Party in Kyaukpru, also said the Indian workers are from the Punj Lloyd Company and their misbehavior toward the villagers ignited the attack.
“The villagers attacked them as they could not tolerate their misbehavior any more. They have been misbehaving against the local people here since they arrived to work for the Shwe Gas Project. Few of them were injured by the attacks,” said U Thandar Maung.
According to the youth, the villagers destroyed and set fire to some of the machines in the station during the incident and ran away after police fired a number of gunshots into the air.
The officer on duty at the police station in downtown Kyaukpru however, said they had not yet received any information of the incident when contacted by Narinjara.
Krattain Village is situation 12 miles from downtown Kyaukpru and the Indian Punj Lloyd company is doing construction on the project nearby the village.