Imphal Review of Arts and Politics


Vaccines Coming up in January Last Week, Custodial Deaths Probe Resurfaces and Left Parties Protest Farm Laws

Covid vaccinations after due trials have been announced tentatively for the last week of January in Manipur, while the matter of custodial deaths cases have come up again with court directions along with the CBI chargesheet against 8 policemen allegedly involved in a fake encounter. A child trafficking case also came up and in other events the Left unions protested the Farm Laws.



COVID Vaccination in Jan Last

The COVID-19 vaccination programme is likely to begin in Manipur in the last week of January in 246 health centres across the state, Health Services director Dr K Rajo said during the state’s weekly briefing on COVID-19 at Lamphelpat in Imphal on January 8.  He also said the dry run for COVID-19 vaccination in all the 16 districts of the state was successfully completed on January 8.

Rajo was addressing the media announcing that the ministry has approved two COVID-19 vaccines – Covishield and Covaxin – after conducting several phases of testing, Rajo assured the public that there will be no major side effects of the vaccines and will be totally safe.

Of the 246 selected health centres for COVID-19 vaccination, 138 are government centres and 108 are private centres and as per the guidelines of the Health ministry, the beneficiaries for the first phase of the vaccination will only be the health workers, he added.

Court Gives 2 Weeks to Ministry

The Court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Imphal West on January 8 gave two weeks to the Union of India (Ministry of Defence) to submit a statement in reply to the written submission made by the family of deceased Pheiroijam Sanajit and Extra-judicial Execution Victim Families Association Manipur’s (EEVFAM) protest petition.

Reports said the court allowed the prayer of the Defence Ministry and gave the time on condition that the reply statement should be submitted to the court within two weeks’ time from January 8 or else the court should pass an appropriate order of the protest petition filed by the families of the deceased and EEVFAM, in connection with the submission of final report of Pheiroijam Sanajit.

The court was hearing the objection raised by wife of Pheiroijam Sanajit and EEVFAM regarding the final report which the CBI filed last month on the ground that central government, particularly the Ministry of Defence denial to accord prosecution sanction under Section 197 CrPC and Section 6 of AFSPA against four accused army personnel belonging to 19 Rajput (Bikaner).

CBI Chargesheet on 8 SF

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Special Investigation Team (SIT) on January 5 submitted a charge sheet against eight Manipur police personnel in an alleged fake encounter case in which a 12-year-old minor Md Azad Khan of Phoubakchao Makha Leikai was killed in 2009.

This is the 17th charge sheet filed by the SIT team after it was constituted by the CBI in compliance to a Supreme Court order issued on July 14, 2017, to probe into as many as 1,528 cases of extra-judicial killings in Manipur allegedly perpetrated by the Indian Army, Indian Paramilitary Forces and Manipur Police.

Lhukhosei Zou Drug Case

A group of women-led by All Manipur Women’s Social Reformation and Development Samaj president Th Ramani representing 26 women organisations of Manipur had submitted a memorandum to Manipur Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren on January 8 demanding for an appeal to higher court and reinvestigation of the drug haul case involving former ADC chairman of Chandel, Lhukhosei Zou, who was recently acquitted in the 2018 case by the NDPS Special Court, Manipur.

Reports said the group of about 50 women was stopped by the police at Nupi Lal Complex and only few of the representatives were allowed to get inside the Chief Minister’s Secretariat office. Later, the representatives came out without meeting the chief minister. However, the memorandum, demanding appeal of the Lhukhosei Zou Case at the High Court of Manipur, was submitted.

Speaking to the media, Ramani said that the group of women came to meet CM, Nongthombam Biren to discuss the present situation of drugs issue and to submit a memorandum demanding to reinvestigate the drug haul case involving Lhukhosei Zou at higher court.

Poppy Destroyed

A total of 1,420 acres of illegal poppy plantations has been destroyed for the crop year 2020-2021.

Reports said a combined team of Narcotics and Affairs of Border (NAB), Imphal East along with Saikul police, district administrative staffs, home guards, Imphal East district police and one column of 15 Assam Rifles and department of Horticulture and Forest destroyed about 70 acres of illegal poppy plants on January 8.

The illegal poppy plants were found growing at the Maharani hill range, which is under the jurisdiction of Sagolmang Police Station.

Women Peddlers Held

A team of district commando, Kakching arrested two drug peddlers carrying brown sugar at Chandel Lamkhai on January 6.

Reports said that the peddlers have been identified as one Ng Toroni, 42, wife of Ngamnuh of Mitong Village, Chandel district and Shangshang Ngaruh, 42, daughter of late Koko Ngaruh of the same village. The two drug peddlers were arrested on January 6 at 9.20 pm from Kakching Lamkhai by the commando team. During verification, 259 grams of brown sugar were seized from their possession. A case has been registered at Kakching police station for further investigation.

Child Trafficking

The court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Imphal West on January 8 released three persons on bail in connection with a child trafficking case which recently took place on January 4. The three were released after furnishing bail bond of Rs 1,00,000 each.

However, a woman allegedly involved in the case was sent to fifteen days judicial custody.

Reports said the three persons are identified as Aribam (O) Sunita, 55 wife of (L) Aribam Dayano of Nagamapal, Kangjabi Leirak; Akoijam Kalpana Chanu, 32, daughter of Akoijam Lokeshor Meitei of Sagolband Tera Yengkhom Leirak and Hajarimayum Sanjeev Sharma, 51, son of (L) H Modhu Sharma of Nagamapal Phougeishangbam Leikai.

The woman who has been sent to judicial custody is identified as Joylaxmi Datta, 34, wife of Rajkumar Datta of Tripura.

Arms Seized

A combined team of district commando, Bishnupur and 16 Assam Rifles seized arms and ammunition during a search operation at Oinam Mayang Pat area on January 7.

Reports said that during the combined search operation that was held at about 6.30 am, one 9mm pistol, one 0.32 mm pistol, one 3.3 rifle, one Chinese grenade, one 36-hand grenade, one detonator, twelve 3.3 ammunition, one handheld set, one 9 mm magazine, one 0.32 mm magazine and one 3.3 rifle magazine were detected. The detected arms and ammunition were reportedly suspected to be hidden by a KCP group. The recovered arms and ammunition were handed over to Nambol police station. In connection with it, a case has been registered at Nambol police station for further investigation.

ITI Sekmai Inaugurated

In continuation to the state government’s initiative to bring inclusive development in the state, Manipur Chief Minister, Nongthombam Biren on January 7 inaugurated Industrial Training Institute (ITI), Sekmai and also laid the foundation stones for two women’s markets at Sekmai and Kanglatongbi.

Reports said the ITI is constructed by Manipur Tribal Development Corporation Ltd under Enhancing Skill Development Infrastructure in North Eastern States (ESDI) while the implementing agency for the construction of the two women’s market will be Manipur Police Housing Corporation Ltd (MPHC Ltd).

Left Protest Farm Laws

The Left peasant unions comprising Manipur Loumee Marup (MLM-affiliated to AIKS), Manipur Loumee Lup (MLL-affiliated to AIKS, Ajay Bhavan), Samyukta Kisan Sabha (SKS) and the All India Agragami Kisan Samitee (AIAKS) with North East Forum of International Solidarity (NEFIS) jointly organised a one-day hunger strike against the ‘farm laws’ at Irawat Bhawan, BT Road, Imphal on January 3.

Reports said that addressing at the hunger strike, secretary of MLL, Haobijam Ibobi said that the farm laws passed by the BJP-led NDA government in Indian Parliament in September 2020 is not in favour of the Indian peasants. He further said that the Central government is committed to serve their masters, the corporate world to get huge electoral bonds from them to purchase the electorates in the coming elections in the country.

Manipur-Nagaland Boundary

The United Committee Manipur (UCM) has expressed keen desire to ascertain whether the wildfire raging from December 29 at Dzuko valley and its surrounding mountains got started naturally or it was man-made.

A UCM in a press release on January 5 said the Manipur-Nagaland border region has been apparently in contention since April, 2015 after an alleged land grabbing issue at Kozirii which was followed by Angami villagers disrupting normalcy by imposing a blockade on innocent Mao villagers.

ASI Engaged in Fire Fight Dies

An Assistant Sub-Inspector of NDRF who was deployed to tackle the wildfire at Dzuko valley was found dead in a tent in the morning of January 5.

He was reportedly on duty till last evening at the base camp.

Reports said that he had no complaints of health complications till yesterday but was found dead early this morning in the tent where the NDRF, SDRF and State police personnel reportedly slept, some 13-14 kms away from Mao Police Station.

DM Teachers Protest

The teachers of the five constituent colleges of DM University have started their agitations from January 5. They started staging sit-in-protests from January 6 after a day they ceased taking online and offline classes.

Gambhir Singh Death Observed

While the United Peoples’ Front (UPF) observes the 187th Death Anniversary of Meidingu Chinglen Nongdrenkhomba (Gambhir Singh) as National Reconsolidation Day at Lamyanba Sanglen, Konung Lampak Imphal the state function was organised by the Department of Archaeology, Arts and Culture was organised at Maharaja Gambhir Singh memorial complex at Langthabal.

Reports said the Manipur Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren with his cabinet colleagues and Rajya Sabha MP Maharaja Sanajaoba Leishemba paid floral tributes. Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren said the names of the kings of Manipur started from 33 AD will be marked in the complex.

In the National Reconsolidation Day 2021 organised by the UPF, W. Second President of UPF; Lanboi Kabui, Vice President of Kabui Union Manipur; Pu Mangcha Haokip, President of Kuki Inpi Manipur; R V Son Zimik, Vice President of Tangkhul Naga Foothills Organisation (TNFO); Dr. Md. Abdul Salam, Assistant Professor of Thoubal College were on the dais as presidium members while Prof. M C Arun of Department of Anthropology of Manipur University and R K Bobichand, Associate Editor of Imphal Review of Arts and Politics were resource persons.

Many civil society leaders of the state and Meira Paibi leaders spoke in the observation.

It may be mentioned that after Burma (Awa) invaded Manipur in 1819 and continued their occupation till February 24, 1826, which is known as Seven Year’s Devastation. Members of the royal family and hundreds of thousands of the people ran to other neighbouring places like Cachhar, Silhet, Dhaka and Chittagong for shelter. Later Gambhir Singh with the help of his brother Nara Singh organised Manipur Levy with the help of British and liberated Manipur from Burmese occupation and reconsolidated its people.

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