At least six vehicles were torched and five suspected student activists arrested as stray incidents of violence marred the first of the two-day night road blockade called by Khasi Students Union (KSU) to protest the proposed uranium mining project in Meghalaya.
Unidentified assailants burnt two vehicles near Mairang in West Khasi Hills district and one each in Ri Bhoi, Jaintia Hills and East Khasi Hills districts since Wednesday night.
Acting DGP B Kezo told reporters that five youths were detained in connection with the incidents.
Regular traffic on the highways was hit during the blockade. Reports from Ri Bhoi, West Khasi Hills and East Khasi Hills districts said the traffic along the highways thinned after 7 pm last evening. The response was mixed in Jaintia Hills district.
Few vehicles, especially trucks, that plied on NH 40 and 44 were provided with police escort, officials said.
Additional security personnel, including paramilitary troops, were deployed in the state to prevent any further untoward incidents during the blockade hours that resume from 9 pm tonight, he said.
The KSU had decided to intensify its agitation by enforcing the blockade from 9 pm to 5 am on October 14 and 15 to protest the government's decision to lease land to Uranium Corporation of India Limited (UCIL).