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Minority community upset over report

Imphal, July 23: The minority community in Manipur is upset over a report by a Delhi-based news magazine, which claimed that 17 youths of the community were recruited by al-Qaida.

The report claimed the terror network recruited 17 youths from Lilong, a minority concentrated area in Thoubal district, and four of them even returned home.

“It is the month of Ramazan during which we pray to god. However, the report disturbed the religious environment and we are upset because the report was baseless and without any foundation,” Moulana Muhei, a religious leader of the community, said.

The residents of the area gathered at Lilong town today to condemn the report. They also burnt an effigy of the chief adviser of the magazine, under whose byline the report was published, along with copies of the magazine.

The community announced a boycott of the magazine in its settlement areas in Manipur. It also announced the boycott of an Imphal-based English daily for reproducing the story without cross-checking.

The All Manipur Muslim Organisations Co-ordinating Committee today announced that the magazine has been banned in Manipur.

Lilong remained tense today with leaders of minority community organisations turning up at the local town and denouncing the report by using a public address system.

Md Nasir Khan, the general secretary of Manipuri Muslim Online Forum, said the government should initiate an investigation into the report.

They claimed no one from Lilong was recruited by the organisation as claimed by the report.