April 18, 2024

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After 'Threats', Congress Seeks Security For Inner Manipur Candidate Bimol Akoijam

Dr Angomcha Bimol Akoijam is the Congress candidate from Inner Manipur seat

Imphal/New Delhi:

The Congress in Manipur has asked the state chief electoral officer and the police chief to provide security to the party’s Inner Manipur candidate Dr Angomcha Bimol Akoijam after five-six unknown people came to his Imphal home and left threatening messages for him to his family.

In the letter signed by Manipur Congress president K Meghachandra, the party said the unknown people came on Wednesday when Dr Akoijam was not at home, and they gave an ultimatum to his family to send him to a certain location for a meeting on Friday at 8 am.

“The said unknown persons around 5/6 again came to the house of our candidate after around 1 hour gap and repeatedly asked the family members not to disobey their order,” the state Congress chief said in two letters sent to the police chief Rajiv Singh, and Manipur chief electoral officer Pradeep Kumar Jha.

Dr Akoijam, a professor in Delhi’s Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), is contesting the Lok Sabha elections for the first time. Manipur has only two Lok Sabha seats – Inner Manipur, and Outer Manipur.

The state Congress president in the letters said no security has been provided to Dr Akoijam despite informing the authorities about the threat to his life.

“In such situation if your good office has not taken up necessary actions for providing adequate security personnel at the earliest, there may be untoward incidents which may not be compensated in terms of money since he (Dr Akoijam) has reasonable apprehension of risk to life,” Mr Meghachandra said, adding such threats will not ensure free and fair elections.

The Congress sought security cover for their candidate by personnel from the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) immediately.

Dr Akoijam has long been involved in public issues and democratic movements. He had been voicing concerns about the simmering ethnic tensions in the border state long before violence broke out between the Kuki-Zo tribes and the Meiteis in May 2023.

The JNU professor took the political plunge after a lifetime of teaching. He holds an MA and a PhD in psychology.

Manipur will vote in two phases, with Inner Manipur voting on April 19, along with some assembly segments of Outer Manipur. The remaining segments of Outer Manipur will vote on April 26. Counting is on June 4.

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