New Delhi, Aug 16 (ANI): At least three persons were severely injured when police tried to disperse a gathering of Naga students here today outside the Manipur Bhawan.
The injured were immediately rushed to the hospital. One of the organizing committee members has been arrested as well. Hundreds of Naga students residing in the capital had gathered to take out a protest demonstration against the imposition of Section 144 of CrPC in Manipur’s Ukhrul district.
The protest was organized by the Tangkhul Katamnao Long, Delhi (TKLD) under the banner ‘Committee against imposition of CrPc 144 in Ukhrul’.
The protestors shouted slogans such as “Go Back IRBs and Commandos”, “Revoke 144 CrPC” and “Stop pestering the hill tribes”.
“Many such killings continue to take place in Imphal but no such CrPC 144 is being imposed in Manipur. But today for the first time when such a incident happened in Ukhrul, they have taken it as a right point to impose an punish the people of Ukhrul which is totally a discriminatory act by the government of Manipur. So we the Tangkhul students union Delhi and all the Naga bodies in Delhi and back home are totally against the communal politics of Ibobi.We continue to appeal to all the concerned members from all corners of India to support our cause and to remove the CrpC 144 immediately. That is our demand”, said the President, Tangkhul Student’s Union, Delhi (TKLD), Phungshok Khongreiwoshi.
Later, the student leaders submitted a memorandum demanding for the immediate restoration of civil order and withdrawal of the IRBs and Commandos from Ukhrul, restoration of complete autonomy to the hill tribes and charting out a long lasting alternative resolution for the hill tribes of Manipur.
On July 12, the former Vice Chairman of Ukhrul autonomous district council Ngalangzar Malue was killed by unidentified miscreants at Finch corner. While 8 cadres of NSCN (IM) were arrested following the killing, no outfit has come forward yet to claim the attack. The state government, in response imposed the Section 144 of the Criminal Procedure Code of India (CrPC) in and around Ukhrul District head quarters. Police commandos and Indian Reserved Battalion (IRB) personnel have also been deployed in the area.
The State Government’s decision to impose the Section 144 has received much criticism from various civil society organizations and the general public of the state as well as the Nagas residing outside the state.
There have been widespread protests in Manipur demanding that the state government immediately lift the 144 CrPC from Ukhrul and withdraw the heavy security deployment.
The presence of security forces, people believe leads to a fear psychosis in the minds of the people.
“The public itself has time and again demonstrated on many occasions that they do not want IRB and Commandos. There is no civil disorder; there is no imminent threat to life, safety or peace which is one of the reasons that CrPC can be promulgated. So the reason that the Manipur government is saying that they want to maintain peace and tranquility in Ukhrul headquarters is nothing but a lie. It’s a politically motivated move to penalize and slow down the peace loving Nagas”, Convener of the Organising Committee, Lakpachui Siro said.
The United Naga Council had also called for a bandh in the Naga areas last month to protest against the action of the Manipur government, claiming that the decision to impose section 144 is a violation of the ground rules of the cease fire agreement between the Nagas and the State Government.
People claim that the imposition of the section is a threat to their democratic rights and affects their freedom of movement, thereby disrupting normal life of the public. The Government meanwhile has been maintaining that the decision to impose CrPC 144 was in view of the law and order situation.
By Themthingchon YR
“The chronic hostility of the Government towards the hill tribes and the constant weakening of the constitutional provisions safeguarded for the hill people are absolutely unacceptable. The attempt of the Government is nothing but to usurp the right of the hill people and in particular the Naga’s right to free practice of customary law, ownership of land and civil autonomy,” said TKLD President, Phungshok Khonreiwoshi, at the protest.
Convener of the Organising Committee, Lakpachui Siro, said, “If the Government continues to ignore the democratic voice of the people and does not immediately withdraw the illegal deployment of IRBs and Commandos, the Nagas would be left with no alternative but to rise up in open civil insurrection and drive them out by whatever means and the Government would be held solely responsible for whatever consequence that ensues.”