CM Biren cancels Churachandpur visit; streets wear deserted look as CrPC clamped; internet mobile data shut; protest continue at venue

Churachandpur: Chief minister N Biren Singh’s visit to Churachandpur district slated for Friday to inaugurate an Open Gym at PT Sports Complex, Khominthang, Churachandpur, as well as to attend a public gathering arranged at Sadbhavna Mandap, New Lamka has been called off in the aftermath of the unruly mob attack Thursday evening — setting fire to the newly constructed Open Gym, dismantling of the venue for public gathering.

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Angry mob who reportedly gathered at PT Sports Complex, Khominthang area from around 6 pm damaged the Open Gym, setting it on fire Thursday evening, according to Churachandpur based news portal, The Hills Journal.

Churachandpur Ukhrul Times

Following the incident, the additional district magistrate immediately clamped Section 144 CrPC in the whole area under the revenue jurisdiction of Churachandpur district, particularly within New Lamka area. Large number of police commandos from Imphal were rushed late Thursday by the government, sources said.

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As latest news unfolds, sources in Churachandpur today have confirmed that, locals at New Lamka are continuing to stage protest at the venue hall of Sadbhavna Mandap, which was vandalised by angry mob damaging chairs and furniture Thursday evening.

It is worth noting that the Indigenous Tribal Leaders Forum (ITLF) on the arrival day [Friday] of the CM N Biren Singh called for a total shutdown in Churachandpur district from 8 AM to 4 PM.

The ITLF imposed the total shutdown alleging that no positive response came forth from the government to several memorandum submitted by the forum highlighting grievances and apprehensions (about the survey carried out by the government) pertaining to reserved forest/protected forest/wetlands/wildlife and eviction of villages.

Also read | Joint Coordination Committee on Tribal Rights, Manipur calls HC’s ruling ‘unilateral judgement’

The authority in Churachandpur district have effectively suspended internet and mobile data in the district from Friday morning, sources say.

It may be mentioned here that ever since the High Court of Manipur‘s notification — under the acting Chief Justice of the HC of Manipur, Justice M.V. Muralidharan — directing the Manipur govt to submit a recommendation to the Tribal Affairs Ministry, the govt of India, for the inclusion of the Meitei/Meetei community in the Scheduled Tribe list of the Indian Constitution, the State tribal communities predominantly in the hills, have strongly opposed to the judgement, calling it “unilateral,” “ex parte” and highly objectionable.

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