Internet blocked in Indian state of Manipur to quell violence

GAUHATI: Naga protesters have blocked a key highway and authorities shut down wireless Internet services to quell heightening tension in a northeast Indian state where seven people have died in violence this week.


Officials say the protesters cut trees and used boulders to stop movement of trucks, buses and cars Thursday on the highway linking Manipur state with the rest of India, paralyzing normal life in the area.

N. Biren Singh, a ruling Congress party lawmaker, said the state government blocked wireless Internet and text messaging services on Wednesday to stop rumors provoking people to commit arson.

The violence erupted on Monday after the state legislature approved new legislation defining who can claim to be from Manipur. Rioters set fire to the homes of nine lawmakers.