One of the 4 Tangkhul victims narrates May 24 ordeal along Imphal’s Kwakeithel Airport road


Ukhrul, May 24: This is what happened to us today.

We left for Imphal airport at around 11:10 am (Wednesday). Around 11:30 am we met with agitators on the way. The mob stopped our vehicle and did not allow us to pass. We asked why we were being stopped? “We are Tangkhuls en-route to airport,” we told. One person yelled and asked, “Are you Naga?!”

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So we responded, we are Tangkhuls. Without paying heed, the mob dragged us by our hair on the road. They tore our clothes, bags, including inner wears. A man came with an iron rod in an attempt to beat us. I raised my hand and it hit me. Two other people came from behind and told us to run away from the scene, sensing trouble said, “Go away quickly, leave your belongings, save your lives!”

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I responded; I will not run away! We are Tangkhuls, why would we run? We stayed there. The driver tried and pacified with the mob to quell the emotion. The driver told the mob that he personally knows our brother. “I was contacted by the family to help them drop at airport. That is why I am dropping them off. Please let them go,” appealed the driver [who is a Meitei]. An elderly person came and told us that the situation was tense as one Meitei was killed today. “We are sorry that this has happened to you. Please forgive us,” said the elderly. And we left.

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The victim names from Namrei village under Ukhrul District are identified as Ramsowon R Shimray, d/o Ngashanmi R Shimray; Philathing Kaping, d/o Philip Kaping; Somipem R Shimray, d/o Ngaraipam R Shimray; Lotus R Shimray, d/o Kamka R Shimray.

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