IMPHAL, April 15: A brief tussle occurred between the police and residents of Mayang Imphal today amidst a curfew following arrest of the owner of the vehicle which was allegedly stolen on April 7 by the three youths who were caught and beaten up by the locals resulting in the death of two.
The tussle occurred in front of the Mayang Imphal police station.
The JAC formed against the agitation following April 7 Sagaisabi incident has also warned to launch severe forms of agitations if the vehicle owner is not released unconditionally by the police.
It has also asserted that it will not remain silent if the police try to arrest any of the five residents of Mayang Imphal against whom FIR has been lodged in connection with the incident.
The arrested vehicle owner has been identified as Khangembam Ibungo, 45, son of (L) Achou of Mayang Imphal Thongkhong. He was reportedly arrested last midnight by a team of police commandos.
It is also learnt that the police have also registered an FIR against five individuals in connection with the assault on the three youths at Sagaisabi for allegedly trying to steal a parked moped and the subsequent death of two of them at the hospital.
Around 9am today, the police and the local residents were engaged in a brief confrontation over the arrest; however, the police managed to disperse the mob using tear gas shells.
There were no reports of anyone injured in the confrontation till the filing of this report.
Reports said that representatives of the JAC came to the police station demanding the reason behind the arrest of Ibungo.
However, as police and JAC members were reportedly engaged in talks, the JAC supporters number converging outside the station grew gradually.
With the curfew still in effect, the police dispersed the crowd peacefully but it later turned violent when some of the supporters started banging the electric poles, the reports further said adding that police resorted to firing tear gas and used force.
Aggrieved by the arrest and the police action towards the JAC and its supporters, the JAC convened a meeting wherein it resolved to threaten to take up extreme steps if the arrested man is not released unconditionally and any attempt is made to arrest the five implicated in the case.
Speaking to media persons, a JAC representative questioned the intention of the Government of Manipur referring to the arrest of Ibungo and lodging FIR against five individuals of Mayang Imphal.
Is the Manipur Government also supporting the theft, further questioned the JAC representative.
He revealed that the JAC met with the Chief Minister of Manipur on April 13 wherein it had been made clear that no one should be arrested in connection with the April 7 incident.
He contended that the Government of Manipur will be held responsible if any unwanted consequence rises out of the JAC’s agitation.
Following today’s incident, Mayang Imphal, which was slowly limping back to normalcy, came to a grinding halt once again today.
Even as there was no restriction of movement along the Mayai Lambi road, vehicles stayed off the road except for a few, as the report of clash spread.
Meanwhile, it is also learnt that residents of the April 11 clash site and nearby areas who had fled from the area after the violence are yet to return to their homestead.