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MPP marches for justice

- Party protests delay in arrest of leader’s killers

Imphal, Dec. 9: Members of Manipur Peoples Party today took to the streets, protesting against the Okram Ibobi Singh government’s failure to arrest the culprits responsible for the killing of its vice-president Haobijam Manisana Singh.

Unidentified men shot dead 63-year-old Manisana, the party’s vice-president, in a highway attack at Changangei Uchekon near Imphal airport on November 13, while he was driving to the MPP head office here from his home in Bishnupur district.

No militant group claimed responsibility for the killing and the police could not find any clue to the identity and motive of the killings.

The government had not given permission for the protest march today.

The police finally stopped the march after allowing the protesters to walk for nearly 400 metres, along the busy Bir Tikendrajit road from the party head office here.

The police allowed a seven-member delegation, headed by MPP president N. Sovakiran Singh, to meet governor Ashwani Kumar at Raj Bhavan.

The MPP believed it was “political assassination”, but did not point fingers at anyone.

“We believe it is a case of political assassination, because there is no reason to kill our leader. But at the same time, we are not able to accuse anyone,” a party leader said.

The protesters carried placards reading “killing the vice-president can’t suppress the MPP” and “stop gun culture”.

The MPP delegation submitted a memorandum to the governor, expressing its unhappiness at the failure of the state government to take serious steps to identify and arrest the culprits.

Today’s march came after the party received no response to a representation submitted to chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh on November 16 and to a reminder of the representation on November 20.

“No response (to the representation) has been received in this regard from the side of the state government. In other words, the action of the chief minister seems that he is acting in an irresponsible manner,” the memorandum told the governor.

The memorandum urged the governor to take the matter seriously and direct the state government to find the culprits and arrest them.

A joint action committee of Bishnupur today threatened to launch an agitation if the government failed to arrest the culprits.

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