Thursday, October 12, 2006

96 Uprising - The arrest

There were 600 (official number by the junta) of us against probably more than 600 of the soldiers. Every direction I looked, they were no end in sight.
Our arms were interlocked. Our minds united. A colonel walked down from the other side of the road. I kept my eyes on him. It was 3 minutes before 6am on 3rd December 1996 on my watch. The morning light was yet to shine.

He stopped just after our back line. His eyes were filled with hatred; his expression showed he regarded us as his enemies. He then yelled with rage “YITE” (BEAT). The sticks fell onto the heads of the students sitting at the far end from all three directions the army positioned (I did not know whether the police at our left involved in it). They were obviously told to aim the head. They beat and they dragged the students and threw them onto the open trucks. In no time, our first lines were broken and they started beating second lines of students. Some of us stood up and shouted to stop the beatings and offered that we board the truck on our own. But the soldiers didn’t care anymore. They had no intention to stop. They cursed us and they beat us. Be it a boy or a girl. Many of us were already running towards the truck to avoid beatings. And ran did we.

Another group of soldiers were waiting between us and the trucks and greeted those managed to run through with their sticks. I dived under a truck with along with many others. We then emerged from the other side of the truck and tried to board it. However, I noticed the lines of soldiers stationed on the other side of the trucks were also doing the same beatings. Somehow, I managed to board the truck but barely. The truck was overcrowded and I had to tightly grab another fellow’s neck already on it. He knew my situation and he grabbed me with one hand as well. Many were still trying to board overcrowded trucks by then.

Then, another one emerged from underneath the truck and try boarding from the same place as mine. I tried to pull him up with my one hand. He grabbed my hand strongly and tried his best to jump in. In the mean time, a soldier was beating him all along right under my very eyes. Within seconds, he fell backwards on the road. It was not only him who was beaten on the process of boarding the trucks. All of us, including girls were beaten badly that day.

They had to bring in dynas again since the army trucks were not enough for all of us. Those who had to climb down from the trucks and transfer to the dynas were beaten again until they reach on board. These soldiers beat us when we were sitting peacefully, they beat us when we were running, they beat us when we were boarding the trucks. From the start of the beatings until the end, none of us responded physically or even verbally. Yet, they called us destructive elements.

The portrait of Bogyoke was broken and lying on the ground with the flags of fighting peacock. (We were later told that right after the colonel’s order; the soldiers kicked crashed the Bogyoke portrait held by our leader Ko Soe Tun before hitting him on the head. We also learnt the fighting peacock flag was brought down and stepped over by the soldiers.) There were slippers, wallets, purses, water bottles, and bags scattered on the street. These were all lost along with the donation the students received from the people.

Soldiers were positioned in the front seats as well as standings at the backs of the trucks. The line of trucks carrying us inched towards Kyaik Kasan ground just before daybreak.


seinmyoutmyout said...

I'm so sad whenever i read just like article.But we need to know that how junta treat students.

Ka Daung Nyin Thar said...

i extend my condolences to all the students who sacrifice their lives from here..

may we end this wholesome bunch of regime rule

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