At least four people, including a civilian, a militant and two Army personnel, have been killed in separate incidents in Manipur in the past week, the Imphal Free Press reported on Friday.
The 38 Assam Rifles shot dead a suspected militant about 6 km from Kangpokpi town at 10 pm on March 2. The militant was identified as 22-year-old Rexcy Lhouvum, an active cadre of the Thadou People’s Liberation Army. A few hours later, around 2 am, unidentified gunmen shot dead 23-year-old Thokchom Jagat near his house in Imphal city. Jagat was returning from a Thabal Chongba dance performance when he was killed, The Sangai Express reported. The police are still trying to find out why Jagat was killed.
On March 5, a jawan from the 13 Sikh Light Infantry succumbed to his injuries at the Leimakhong military hospital in Imphal West after a gunfight with suspected members of the armed group National Socialist Council of Nagaland (Isak Muivah) in Tamenglong district, the Imphal Free Press reported. The incident took place when two teams of the infantry division were on patrol in Nungadang and Molphei villages after receiving reports of clashes between the NSCN(IM) and another rebel group, the Zeliangrong United Front. In the gunfight, Amarsheer Singh of Fazilka, Punjab, sustained a bullet injury on his chest.
The NSCN(IM), which has been in talks with the Central government to find a resolution to the Naga crisis, on Friday denied that it had anything to do with the encounter, The Sangai Express reported. The Army’s accusation, it said, was highly immature and questionable as it came at a time when the Nagas and Centre are close to resolving the long-standing dispute.
Violence against the security forces, however, continued with militants of the United National Liberation Front ambushing a 28 Rajput Rifles patrol team in Chandel district along the Indo-Myanmar border on March 6. The militants detonated three improvised explosive devices, killing a soldier and injuring three. The deceased soldier was identified as Abhijit Mondal from West Bengal’s Nadia district.