Hundreds of protesters took to the streets at Khurai Lamlong Market in Imphal East district on Saturday as agitation demanding justice for the demise of a medical student in mysterious circumstances gained momentum.
Sanaton Athokpam (22), an MBBS 5th semester student, was found hanging inside his hostel room with his hands tied on his back at Regional Institute of Medical Science (RIMS) in Imphal on March 15 last.
Alleging that it was a murder case, family, relatives and locals of Khurai area of Imphal East district were launching various forms of agitations, pressing the state government for a probe into the mysterious death of the medical student.
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Continuing the agitation, hundreds of residents of Khurai and its surrounding areas today came out on the streets at the market area and staged different forms of agitations simultaneously, making the police a hard time to deal with. The streets were also deserted after the shops and business centres were forced to suspend their business transactions owing to the prevailing tense situation. The residents commenced the agitations from the morning as while some groups were staging sit-in-protests, other groups attempted to carry out protest rallies. The residents launched the agitations under the banner of ‘Justice for Sanaton Athokpam’.
Around 9 am, a large number of residents came out on the street to carry out a rally. However, an already alerted large number of police teams foiled the attempt.
Despite the strong restriction from the police, some groups of people came out to stage sit-in-protests at separate places while others were imposing road blockade in protest against police action.
In the afternoon, once again a large number of people came out of the streets in their respective localities and carried out slogan shouting demonstrations. The protestors shouted various slogans demanding justice for the deceased medical students. They alleged the student was murdered and RIMS authorities as well as the state government were trying to cover the truth.
Mention may be made that the state government had, on March 23, ordered a magisterial enquiry into the death of the medical students, to find out the facts and circumstances leading to the death and also to identify the person (s) responsible, if any, for the death.