Manipur: In fresh violence, woman shot dead in village by unidentified gunmen
The victim, Donngaiching, was killed by Meitei gunmen near Shishu Niketan school in Kwakeithel, claimed ITLF in a release.

Manipur: In fresh violence, woman shot dead in village by unidentified gunmen

Unidentified gunmen shot dead a woman outside a school in Manipur’s Imphal West district on Thursday, officials said.

The incident occurred at Kwakeithel Mayai Koibi under Lamphel police station a day schools reopened in the state after two months because of the violence. Officials said she had gone near the school for some work but was not linked to any school.

Indigenous Tribal Leaders’ Forum (ITLF), in a release, said the deceased didn’t leave Imphal despite ethnic cleansing in Manipur due to mental illness. “The victim, Donngaiching, was killed by Meitei gunmen near Shishu Niketan school in Kwakeithel. She used to spend her days walking aimlessly and lived in a small shed near a church in Lamphel area,” said the release.

Also read: Manipur: Schools reopen with thin attendance on first day; students, parents happy

‘Not suicide bomber’

The ITLF refuted the allegations on social media by “Meitei propagandists” that she was a “suicide bomber”. “The disinformation campaign by the state-sponsored IT cell is getting flimsier every day and does not even spare the mentally challenged,” it said. The ITLF strongly condemned her killing and urged the Union government “to relieve the incapable state government and impose the President’s rule” immediately.

In another incident, intermittent gunfire was heard in a village in Manipur’s Kangpokpi district early Thursday, hours after security forces thwarted clashes when men armed with automatic weapons began to attack villagers, sources said.

The incident took place around 3.40 pm on Wednesday near Phaileng village, they said.
Armed groups from nearby areas gathered in the area, escalating tensions, the sources said. About 1,000-1,500 women blocked roads to prevent additional forces from reaching the area, they said. However, the situation was brought under control because of the deployment of Assam Rifles personnel in the area.

Also read: Manipur: Mob storms IRB camp to loot weapons, sets fire to a house; one dies

Kukis stage protest

Meanwhile, in Churachandpur, about 100 km away, a large number of Kukis staged a protest on Wednesday. The rally started at Public Ground and continued till the Tuibong Peace Ground. Nearly 4,000 people participated in the rally, most in combat dress with camouflage on their faces, sources said. No untoward incident was reported during the rally, which went on till 7 pm.

More than 100 people have lost their lives and over 3,000 injured since ethnic violence broke out in the state on May 3, when a Tribal Solidarity March was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

Around 40,000 central security personnel, besides the Manipur Police, have been deployed to control the violence and bring back normalcy in the state.

Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley. Tribal Nagas and Kukis constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.

(With agency inputs)

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