Imphal Review of Arts and Politics

A poppy field on one of the hillsides of the Koubru range

Directives, Reports Turn Heat on Alleged Drugs Defaulters, JNIMS Resignations over Pay, and No Bye-poll for Wangkhei Seat

The Ministry of Home Affairs has shown its concern over the rising cases of drugs related crimes in the state even as local anti-drugs collectives and the Congress are going full throttle against alleged drugs defaulters, while JNIMS employees seeking 7th Pay parity have resigned. The Supreme Court has also during the week turned down Okram Henry’s plea for bye-polls to the Wangkhei Assembly seat.


MHA asks State to Reply on Drugs

The Union Home Ministry has issued a directive to the Chief Secretary, Government of Manipur to provide a suitable response to an applicant of the grievance raised over drug menace in Manipur.

Reports said the 3.5 Collective and Human Rights Alert (HRA) had submitted their grievances through the PMOPG portal for necessary action to the state government to prevent Manipur from becoming the next Golden Triangle.

According to a report, the tiny state of Manipur with a population of less than 0.4 per cent of India has 14.22 per cent current opioid users.

A report issued by 3.5 Collective stated that in almost all the hill districts in Manipur, poppy is cultivated with full knowledge of the authority concerned.

The report mentioned a multi crore drug haul case involving high profile operatives including Social Welfare Minister Okram Henry; colonel Ajay Chaudhary; Seikholen Haokip, son of TN Haokip (MLA); chairman of Chandel ADC, Lhukhosei Zou; Ningkhangam Awungsi; Wungreigan Awungsi and Kyaw Kyaw Niang (Myanmar national) and stated that none of the persons have been convicted till date.

Congress for Transfer of Drug Cases to CBI

Branding the BJP-led government’s “war against drugs” as rhetoric, the Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) has demanded transfer of all drugs related cases to the CBI. It also demanded that the state should approach a higher court to seek review of all drug seizure cases disposed by the lower courts.

Reports said, following a public statement made by BJP MLA and deputy chairman of Manipur State Planning Board, L Rameshwar in connection with drug menace in the state, MPCC spokesperson Ningombam Bupendra raised several questions in a press conference held at Congress Bhawan.

Rameshwar’s public statement was a “sincere revelation” of the truth about the ongoing failure of the “war against drugs”, he said, adding the revelations are worthy of appreciation.

CADA’s Laishram Herojit Held

Committee Against Drug and Alcohol (CADA), Thoubal district general secretary Laishram Herojit aka Sintha, was arrested on April 7 by a team of Thoubal Commando, was produced before the court of CJM Thoubal on April 8 and remanded to five days police custody.

Reports said that he was arrested under Section 39 UA(P) Act on charges of being an overground worker of one underground organisation.

Meanwhile, several meira paibi organisations have demanded his immediate release stating that Sintha took a huge role in the protest carried out on April 7 at Heirok Part II Mayai Leikai in Thoubal district, making an appeal to the higher courts concerning the drugs haul case of Lhukhosei Zou.

MHRC asks for Report on Drugs Nexus

The Manipur Human Rights Commission (MHRC) on April 8 directed the state Special Secretary (Home), and Director General of Police (DGP), Manipur to examine the allegations of nexus between drug lords and police officials-politicians and submit a report by May 5.

Observing that there has been serious allegation of ministers, MLAs and police officials nexus with drug lords and kingpins, the MHRC has taken up a suo-moto case based on several reports by local dailies on the issue, reports said.

The MHRC in its order stated that an MLA, who is also the deputy chairperson of the state Planning Board, has alleged that “even as the government is waging a war on drugs. MLAs, ministers, and politicians have supported drug lords.”

JNIMS Employees Resign over Pay

Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) employees under the aegis of Teachers Association (TA) and Trained Nurses Association (TNA) on April 8 submitted their resignations over the state’s failure to implement 7th Pay Commission.

Reports said the development comes a day after talks between the representatives of the employees associations and the state failed.

Earlier, much to the disappointment of the aggrieved employees, the authority informed that they are not entitled to get equal benefits as they are under JNIMS society.

SC Turns Down Henry’s Plea

The Supreme Court has on April 7 declined to entertain the plea filed by BJP politician Okram Henry seeking a direction to the Election Commission to hold bye-elections to the 15-Wangkhei Assembly seat in Manipur Assembly.

Road Blocked over Sanaton Death

Irate locals of Khurai blocked Imphal-Ukhrul road and the road leading to JNIMS from Lamlong Bazar on April 8 and 9 as a part of the agitation demanding justice for Sanaton Athokpam a 5th Semester medical student who was found hanging in the hostel room at RIMS, Imphal.

A JAC formed to look into the matter demanded investigation of the Sanaton death case by filing an FIR, suspension of the RIMS director and warden of Gents’ Hostel No. 3 of RIMS, reports added.

CPI-MSC Mass Campaign

Declaring that the BJP-led government is undeserving of ruling the state, Communist Party of India, Manipur State Council (CPI-MSC) on April 8 announced that its mass campaign from the day will tell the public how the state is being ruined in various aspects after BJP came to power.

Reports quoting CPI-MSC secretary L. Sotinkumar in a press conference held at its office, Irawat Bhawan Complex on April 8 said that the present government claims to be a ‘people centric government’ but in reality, it does not care about anything related to the people’s welfare and this has caused several issues in society,

ECI Okays MPP Officials

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has recently given cognizance to the four office bearers of Manipur People’s Party (MPP) who were elected recently. The duration of their term as per the ECI is from February 11, 2020 till February 10, 2023.

It may be mentioned at the MPP which was founded on December 26, 1968 and formed the State Government in 1972 when Manipur was granted Statehood has reached the present status due to crises within the party and Manipur’s political culture of defections and horse trading.

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