Security personnel killed in militant attack in Moreh town of Manipur

The suspected Kuki militants fired at the security forces post

One state police personnel was killed when suspected Kuki militants attacked a security forces vehicle at the border town of Moreh in Manipur’s Tengnoupal district on Wednesday, police said.

The deceased was identified as Wangkhem Somorjit, an IRB personnel attached to the State Police Command in Moreh. Somorjit is from Malom in Imphal West district, they said.

Security forces also exchanged fire with suspected Kuki militants at three different locations in Moreh town on Wednesday morning, police said.

The militants threw bombs and shot at a security forces post near SBI Moreh, police said, adding that security forces retaliated against the fire.

The militants had also fired RPG grenades at the temporary command post, damaging several vehicles parked nearby.

The suspected Kuki militants fired at the security forces post 48 hours after two suspects in the killing of a police officer were arrested by state forces in the border town, police said.

Earlier, following reports of “likelihood of breach of peace, disturbance of public peace and serious danger to life and property within the fiscal jurisdiction of Tengnoupal”, the Manipur government imposed a total curfew from 12 noon on January 16.

The order issued by District Magistrate Tengnoupal stated that the curfew, however, will not apply to “government agencies engaged in the maintenance of law and order and maintenance of essential services”.

Police had arrested Phillip Khongsai and Hemokholal Mate, the two main suspects in the murder of SDPO Ch Anand in October last year. The two shot at security personnel’s vehicles, after which police chased and overpowered them.

The two were later produced before judicial magistrate Moreh and remanded in custody, police said.

Moreh-based civil bodies, including Kuki Inpi Tengnoupal, had vehemently condemned the arrest and Manipur had demanded the unconditional release of the two within 24 hours. KIT had also warned of serious consequences if the two are not released.

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First print: January 17, 2024 | 11:50 am IST