A police officer was killed after mobs ransacked at least two security posts in the Bishnupur district in the Imphal West of Manipur on Thursday. The irate mob went on to loot arms and ammunition including automatic guns from the security posts.
Manipur Police said that a mob comprising of men and women ransacked the Keirenphabi Police Outpost and Thangalawai Police Outpost of the Manipur Armed Police Second Battalion in the Bishnupur district and went on to loot the weapons.
The mob also tried to seize arms and ammunition from the Heingang and Singjamei police stations, however, they were thwarted by security forces. This led to an exchange of firing between security forces and armed attackers in Koutruk, Haraothel, and Senjam Chirang areas, according to an official statement. At least two people including a security personnel sustained injuries in the crossfire.
A Manipur Police personnel was killed in Senham Chirang in Imphal West after getting shot in the head by a sniper. A village volunteer was also injured in the firing after suspected militants shot several rounds in Koutruk and Senjam Chirang from the nearby hill ranges.
A large crowd of around 500 to 600 people gathered at Phougakchao Ikhai along the district borders between Bishnupur and Churachandpur districts. Security forces also fired tear gas shells in a bid to disperse the mob with around 25 people sustaining minor injuries.
The police statement said, “During the last 24 hours, the situation in the state is still volatile and tense with sporadic incidents of firing and gathering of unruly mobs in different places.”
It may be noted that as many as 129 checkpoints had been set up in both the hill and valley districts of Manipur. Around 1,047 people have been detained so far in connection with the violence in different districts of the northeastern state, said the police.
Manipur has been embroiled in ethnic violence between the Meitei and Kuki communities after the Meitei’s demanded Scheduled Tribes (ST) status. The violence has left hundreds dead and many more displaced.