MANIPUR: In a chilling act of violence, an India Reserve Battalion (IRB) jawan and a civilian were killed in a brazen ambush by unidentified armed men in Manipur’s Kangpokpi district.
The victims, Henminlen Vaiphei of Leimakhong Mission Veng village and Thangminlun Hangsing of Hunkho Kuki village in Imphal West district, were ambushed between Haraothel and Kobsha villages while traveling in a Maruti Gypsy. The sudden burst of gunfire left both Vaiphei and Hangsing fatally wounded.
The attack sent shockwaves through the region, prompting the deployment of additional security forces to apprehend the perpetrators.
The incident also triggered a call for a separate tribal administration in the state, with the Committee on Tribal Unity (COTU) declaring an “emergency shutdown” in Kangpokpi.
The COTU’s demand for a separate administration stems from the simmering tensions between the Meitei and Kuki communities, which have escalated into violence since May.
The ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ organized in the hill districts to oppose the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status ignited the clashes, claiming the lives of nearly 200 people.
Amidst the escalating unrest, Manipur’s borders with Nagaland, Mizoram, and Assam, along with the international border with Myanmar to the east, remain volatile. The situation demands a swift and decisive response from the authorities to restore peace and prevent further bloodshed.