Two individuals, among them the Kuki lyricist Mangboi, have tragically lost their lives due to injuries caused by fragments in Manipur within the past 12-hour timeframe.
This occurrence coincided with a fierce exchange of gunfire between two factions, as reported by officials.
The clashes transpired in the Khoirentak foothills of Bishnupur district and the areas of Chingphei and Khousabung in Churachandpur district on the morning of Thursday.
Intermittent Calm Shattered
According to authorities, this recent barrage of gunfire follows a period of relative calm that lasted from Wednesday evening.
Notably, a person who had sustained injuries from bomb fragments during the violence on Wednesday passed away while en route to Guwahati via Mizoram.
Simultaneously, Mangboi, who had also suffered injuries from splinters, succumbed around 9 am on Thursday at Churachandpur district hospital, where he had been receiving treatment.
Varied Injuries Reported
Of the five individuals who had experienced splinter injuries in the Chingphei area on Wednesday evening, three were transported to Churachandpur district hospital.
Their injuries were varied, with one being struck on the head by fragments, while the others suffered injuries to their shoulders, legs, and backs.
Tragedy in Bishnupur
In a separate incident on Tuesday near Narainsena village in Bishnupur, two men lost their lives and six others were injured. One individual fell victim to a gunshot wound, while the other tragically died due to a misfire from a locally crafted firearm that struck his face.
Amidst these events, the Indigenous Tribal Leaders' Forum (ITLF) declared an immediate and comprehensive shutdown in Churachandpur, excepting essential services such as water and medical provisions.
Security Operations Yield Results
Law enforcement agencies conducted thorough search operations in the vulnerable areas of Kangpokpi, Thoubal, Churachandpur, and Imphal-West districts. These operations yielded the discovery of five firearms, 31 rounds of ammunition, 19 explosive devices, and three sets of improvised explosive device (IED) materials. Manipur police provided this information through a statement on X.
Additionally, the police established 130 checkpoints in various districts and apprehended 1,646 individuals in connection with a range of violations.
Ongoing Ethnic Violence Since May 3
The ongoing ethnic violence that erupted in Manipur on May 3, following a "Tribal Solidarity March" in protest of the Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe status, has tragically resulted in the loss of over 160 lives and left several hundred others injured. (With PTI inputs)