New Delhi: A special court in Manipur has granted bail to five people after there were mass protests calling for their release, the news agency PTI has reported.
These protests took place amidst a newly ordered curfew in Imphal East and Imphal West districts.
The five were village defence volunteers who were arrested by police on September 16 for possessing weapons and wearing camouflage uniforms, the PTI report said.
Earlier reports had said that the men had been charged under the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.
The Wire had noted in an earlier report that the arrested include the 45-year-old Moirangthem Anand Singh, a former cadre of banned outfits People’s Liberation Army (PLA) of Manipur and Kangleipak Communist Party (Noyon). The other four arrested are Keisham Johnson (35), Konthoujam Romojit Meitei (28), Loukrakpam Michael Mangangcha (30) and Athokpam Kajit (39).
The court stipulated that they have to furnish a bond of Rs 50,000, and that they should co-operate with investigation.
The court, the report said, asked the men not to leave Manipur without prior permission and also to not influence the prosecution’s witnesses.
The report notes that “defying curfew restrictions, hundreds of women sat in front of the Cheirap court premises in Imphal West district, where the hearing was held.”
Demonstrators across the state allegedly stormed police stations as part of protests against the arrest of the five young men, PTI wrote in its report.