Sinlung /
15 May 2015

Curfew Imposed in Imphal, 8 Members of Banned Outfit Held

The two masons died when they were taken "into custody" by the underground group during interrogation by the cadre members.

Kuki tribals, Kuki Revolutionary Front, KRF rebels, imphal curfew, imphal riot, imphal news, riot news, kuki news, India news
Children play near a vehicle torched in Imphal, Thursday.

By Esha Roy

Imphal, May 15 : Eight cadre members of the Kuki Revolutionary Front (KRF), a banned underground group in Manipur and a Suspension of Operation signatory with the Indian government, were picked up on Wednesday by a joint team of the Imphal West and Imphal East police commandos for the murder of two masons after a search operation was conducted in Thingsat village and its surrounding areas.

The two masons died when they were taken “into custody” by the underground group during interrogation by the cadre members. A furious mob turned violent on Thursday in light of these deaths in Patsoi village, where both the victims hailed from. They allegedly attempted burning a Church last night and today beat a Kuki driver to death. The violence has taken a communal turn as the masons belong to the majority Meitei community and there have been sporadic attacks on Kuki tribals travelling in the area. The Manipur police has imposed a curfew in the areas and has stopped movement on the Imphal-Jiribam highway where the village is located.
The two victims, both 20-years-old – Moirangthem Dayananda and Maibam Premananda – were working in Needy Home Academy, a residential school located at Maipou Khullen village. They, alongwith a 12-year-old Class 6 student Konthoujam Bishal, were picked up by the KRF cadre members who suspected them of being informants to another Meitei underground group. They went missing Sunday morning. On Tuesday, May 12, Bishal was handed over to his family by the KRF who also informed them that Dayananda and Premananda had “died during interrogation”. Bishal is presently being treated at the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences.

The police have since recovered Abung and Premanandas bodies. Furious Patosi villagers have been blocking the national highway with human chains and tree branches and boulders and burning tyres at various points on the national highway. Police teams have been deployed along the highway to control the situation. They have imposed a curfew in the area and the Joint Action Committee formed by the family members of the deceased and villagers have called a 24-hour general strike from midnight tonight till midnight tomorrow.

The villagers have tried to burn a Church at Patsoi village last night. Five passenger vehicles were halted today and the passengers were made to disembark. The passengers, all belonging to the Kuki tribe, were beaten up – some severely. The five vehicles were then set on fire by the irate mob. A Shaktiman driver, another Kuki tribe members, was also beaten up by the mob. He succumbed to his injuries as he was being rushed to the hospital by the police. Sources said that there have been sporadic attacks on anyone being identified as belonging to the Kuki tribe.

The JAC has demanded an explanation from the KRF as to why these boys had been killed. They have also demanded that the government take action against the group and provide “befitting punishment’’ to the arrested cadre members. They have contended that such incidents do take place every once in a while but the government has not only failed to take action in the past but proper investigations are also not conducted into such incidents.


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