Women groups call 24-hour shutdown in Manipur's valley districts to protest police 'high-handedness'

Imphal, Feb 21 (IANS) A few women groups have called a shutdown in Manipur’s five valley districts on Wednesday to protest “police high-handedness” and to demand release of six persons, arrested in connection with the looting of arms from the camps of Manipur Rifles in Imphal East district on February 13.

There was confrontation between the security forces and women protesters in Imphal on Tuesday, leading the police to fire tear gas shells to quell the protests.

Two women were injured in the confrontation.

The women protestors were demanding release of six people who were arrested in connection with a mob attack and arms loot in the camps of the Manipur Rifles.

The 24-hours shutdown has been called for Wednesday in five valley districts — Bishnupur, Kakching, Thoubal, Imphal West, and Imphal East.

A mob on February 13 attacked the two camps of the Manipur Rifles and one person was reportedly killed while two others were injured in police firing. The deceased had forcefully tried to enter the post of one of the camps of the Manipur Rifles.

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Manipur Police arrested six persons on February 14. Seven police personnel were also suspended for dereliction of duties. Further, four Insas Rifles, one AK Ghatak, two magazines of SLR and 16 small boxes of 9 mm ammunition which are suspected to have been looted from the security forces have also been recovered by police.

The Manipur government has also ordered a magisterial probe into the looting of arms from the security forces’ camp.

–IANS

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