Woman shot dead by unidentified gunmen outside school in Manipur villagetext_fields
Imphal: A woman was shot dead outside a school by armed miscreants on Thursday morning in the Kwakeithel area of Manipur’s Imphal West district.
The incident occurred at Kwakeithel Mayai Koibi under Lamphel police station a day after classes 1 to 8 resumed in the state two months after the ethnic violence.
Sources said the woman was shot dead near Shishu Nistha Niketan School around 8 am. The deceased was believed to be in her early 50s.
While the woman’s identity is yet to be established officially, the Churachandpur-based Indigenous Tribal Leaders Forum claimed that she belonged to a Zo-Kuki community. The forum identified her as Dongaiching, a woman who lived on a church campus in the Lamphel area of Imphal East district.
Strongly condemning the act, the forum said that women, children and even the mentally challenged were not spared from the “genocidal programme” of the majority community.
The woman’s body has been kept at the mortuary of the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences, Imphal.
Meanwhile, intermittent gunfire was heard in a village in Manipur’s Kangpokpi district early Thursday, hours after security forces thwarted clashes when men armed with automatic weapons began to attack villagers, sources said.
The incident took place around 3.40 pm on Wednesday near Phaileng village, they said.
Armed groups from nearby areas gathered in the area, escalating tensions, the sources said.
About 1,000-1,500 women blocked roads to prevent additional forces from reaching the area, they said. However, the situation was brought under control because of the deployment of Assam Rifles personnel in the area.
In Churachandpur, about 100 km away, a large number of Kukis in a separate development staged a protest on Wednesday. The rally started at Public Ground and continued till the Tuibong Peace Ground.
Nearly 4,000 people participated in the rally, most in ‘combat’ dress with camouflage on their faces, sources said.
No untoward incident was reported during the rally, which went on till 7 pm.
More than 100 people have lost their lives and over 3,000 injured since ethnic violence broke out in the state on May 3, when a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
Around 40,000 central security personnel, besides the Manipur Police, have been deployed to control the violence and bring back normalcy in the state.
With inputs from PTI