IMPHAL, December 9: Nine month after the case was first taken up, District and Session Court, Manipur West Judge A Guneshor Sharma today convicted Imphal west commando driver Yumnam Willam and former Manipuri film actor Thongam Tarun of gang raping a school girl under section gang rape and criminal conspiracy.
However, the quantum of punishment for the two accused will be announced on December 11.
The incident reportedly happened on October 20 last year.
As witnessed before at the court complex during hearing of the case in previous instances, a large number of womenfolk, including members of the JAC formed against the incident and family members of the victim, crowded the there today and attacked the two convicts as they were being led out of the court room under heavy security.
Special Public Prosecutor Ng Tejkumar said after the conviction that today’s judgement is the second of its kind in the state. The first being the conviction of four persons in the U-Morok rape case passed on July 25, 2013 by the District and Session Court, Manipur East.
The District and Session Court, Manipur West had taken up the rape case since March 21 under FIR number 325 (10) 2012, Lamphel Police Station under Section 376, 126-B and 120 Indian Penal Code, he said.
Altogether 22 prosecution witnesses submitted their witness report before the judge during the course of the hearing and argument hearing between the prosecution and defence counsels were conducted on two counts before the judge.
Reacting to the verdict denouncing the two convicted in the rape case, he said the verdict is like a gift to the victim family.
The Special Public Prosecutor however announced that he will not take up any other rape cases after the two cases he is presently handling as there is a lot of pressure from several sections of the society; however, he added that he is ready to assist anyone fighting any rape cases.
It may be mentioned that both accused in the rape case, Yumnam William son of (L) Deben of Khagempalli Panthak, a driver of the Manipur police commando and Thongam Tarun son of Th Jayenta of Thangmeiband Sinam Leikai, a Manipuri film actor were lodged at the Sajiwa Central Jail in connection with the rape of a student of TG Higher Secondary School inside a restaurant at Changangei Uchekon along Imphal Airport road on October 20, 2012.
Meanwhile, students of the Tamphasana Girls’ Higher Secondary students had staged a sit in protest on December 7 in front of their school gate, wherein the students resorted to sloganeering “Respect the dignity of women”, “Do not disturb educational peace”, “Reward accused Tarun and William with lifetime imprisonment” etc.
On the other hand, member of the JAC and victims family along with leaders of All Manipur Students’ Union and other civil organisations today called a joint press conference regarding the judgement pass by the court at the AMSU office headquarter late in the evening.
Speaking to the media persons at the press conference Sorojini Leima president United Mothers’ Association (UMO) said that they welcomed the judgement and appealed the court to give death penalty to the two convicts.