New Delhi: Fresh hostilities returned to restive Manipur on Tuesday, January 30, as two persons lost their lives and three suffered injuries during a heavy firing that took place in Kadangband and Koutruk areas of Manipur’s Imphal West district. The incident took place close to the border with the Kuki-Zomi-dominated Kangokpi district.
According to the Indian Express, official sources said the gunfight began at around 2:30 pm and lasted several hours. The death toll could go up, officials say.
The deceased have been identified as Meishnam Khaba (25) from Bishnupur district, and Nongthombam Michael (33) from Imphal East district. The bodies were shifted to the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences in Imphal on Tuesday evening. Both the deceased hail from the Meitei community.
One of the three who sustained injuries is reportedly a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader, who had served earlier as Manipur’s youth president Barish Sharma.
The Manipur Police, in a press statement, confirmed the deaths and identified the deceased. It appealed to the people in Manipur to refrain from believing in rumours and false videos.
So far, at least nine people, including two Meitei police personnel posted in the border town of Moreh, have been killed in various incidents of firing in Manipur this month.
Since the outbreak of ethnic violence on May 3 last year, over 200 people have been killed across the state, and several have been rendered homeless.