19-year-old student killed in attack by suspected militants, sparks protests in Bishnupur

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Newmai News Netwark

Imphal: Killing of a 19-year-old youth and injuring in alleged firing by suspected militants triggered a protest in Bishnupur district of trouble-ridden Manipur on Friday, leaving several women injured in baton-charge by troops of Assam Rifles.

The deceased youth was identified as Mayengbam Ricky Meetei (19) of Kwakta Turel Mapal of Bishnupur district. He was studying in Class-XI at Multipurpose Higher Secondary School, Moirang.

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According to a family source, Ricky died after being hit by a bullet on his way to a safer place after their village came under attack by suspected militants in the wee hours of Friday.

They said that residents of Kwakta Turel Mapal displaced themselves after suspected militants opened fire toward their village from Phousangphai village of Churachandpur district around 2.30 am.

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Almost all the villagers reached Santhong village where they took shelter at a relief camp there. However, Ricky who left home with a scooter failed to reach the relief camp.

Later, his dead body was found lying near a rice hill on the side of the Tidim Road near Kwakta Sericulture Institute.

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The attack on the village was launched while police commandos were engaging in heavy exchange of fire with the suspected militants at Phougakchao Ikhai and its adjoining areas,

When the news of the death of the young boy spread across, residents of Phougakchao Ikhai, Moirang and adjoining areas came out on streets and blocked Tidim Road.

While blocking the road, the students demanded withdrawal of the Central security forces including the Assam Rifles while alleging that they were not there to protect the residents.

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Besides, the mob also blocked the road to prevent reinforcement teams of police commandos rushing to the place where the gunfight took place.

Troops of Assam Rifles resorted to baton-charge the women who were blocking a convoy of the paramilitary force from further proceeding. 

In the melee, at least five women were injured and rushed to nearby hospitals.

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