Imphal: A journalist was among two injured in Imphal today after police fired tear gas shells and mock bombs to disperse a group of protesters demanding immediate stoppage of fencing at the disputed area of Indo-Myanmar border.United Committee Manipur (UCM) has been protesting against the continuation of the fencing works along the Indo-Myanmar border since Tuesday.
On the second day of the protest today, a group of protesters led by UCM president Joychandra Konthoujam staged the protest at Khurai Lamlong Bazar. As the people continued to stage the protest despite repeated warning to end, police resorted to firing several rounds of tear gas shells towards them, in a bid to disperse them.
The police team led by the Imphal East district superintendent of police asked the people to end the protest alleging that no necessary permission was obtained from the competent authority to hold any rally. A scuffle broke out as the protest continued despite the warning, following which the police resorted to firing tear gas shells and mock bombs. In the police action, a woman journalist covering the event and a member of the UCM sustained injuries. The journalist, Linda Devi of Pandam daily and the UCM member were rushed to JNIMS hospital.
Despite police action, the people continued to stage the protest as they marched toward the police while shouting various slogans.
Talking to reporters, UCM president Joychandra Konthoujam strongly condemned the police using force against the protesters while claiming that they were staging the protest in a peaceful manner. He said that they were staging the peaceful protest only to save Manipur’s land losing to Myanmar due to the border fencing at the Indo-Myanmar border.
He announced that the UCM will continue to protest until a positive response from the state government regarding suspension of the ongoing fencing works along the disputed Indo-Myanmar border.
The UCM president then urged the state government to make its stand clear over the boundary issue while alleging that India is sacrificing a large chunk of Manipur’s land to Myanmar.