A Tata magic vehicle hijacked, set afire; Imphal-Ukhrul passenger vehicles suspended indefinitely

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IMPHAL, Nov 16: Three armed miscreants reportedly carjacked a passenger Tata magic vehicle at gunpoint and set ablaze before decamping with a mobile phone and Rs 200 in cash at Khangla Pokpi, under Lamlai police station, Imphal East district early today. The driver of the vehicle, however, returned unhurt.

Consequently, sources from The Imphal Lamlai Taxi Transport Co-operative Society Limited, Lamlai, has informed that a decision to suspend indefinitely all passenger vehicles plying between Imphal and Ukhrul has been taken effective from tomorrow, November 17, until the accused comes up with an explanation on what charges the carjacked Tate magic was set on fire.

The carjacked Tata magic bears a registration no MN 01W – 1997 and the driver has been identified as Heman Pradeep, 20, s/o H Ibomcha of Wangkhei Ayang Palli, Imphal East district. The owner of the vehicle has been identified as Th Nabakumar of Wangkhei Keithel Asangbi, Imphal East district.

According to Pradeep, this morning at around 9:45 a.m. he was getting ready to start ferrying passengers between Lamlai and Imphal when three unknown youths abruptly embarked and asked to go on a ‘reserved’ to Kangu Ching Awang Leikai on the pretext that someone had fallen very ill and had to be transferred to the hospital. When Pradeep refused saying he is new and therefore unfamiliar with the route and that his turn to ply had clocked, the rogue youths threatened the driver by brandishing small arm. On reaching the destination, the carjackers blindfolded him with a muffler and set the vehicle on fire before decamping with his belongings.

Pradeep made his quick eacape from the scene and took refuge in Lamlai police station where he has registered a case to that effect.

Pradeep then informed the secretary of the Imphal Lamlai Taxi Transport Co-operative Society Limited, Lamlai, of which he is a registered member. The secretary of the Society informed the media of the perplexity of the incidence given that there has not been any precedence of monetary demands and the likes by any organizations before the organization.

The carjacked vehicle is currently registered under Sanjrambam Shyamchandra, 37, of Chingaren Tejpur and that Th Nabakumar recently bought up but the transfer of name from the previous owner to the current one has not been completed yet. It was purchased from Manipur Golden Travel (MGT) Finance by Tata Motor Finance Private Limited.

In the meanwhile, later in the afternoon, Lamlai police has picked up the charred remains of the vehicle from the spot.

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