Saturday, 28 September 2019 - Imphal Times

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Imphal, Sept. 28

Office of the Divisional Forest Officer, Central Forest Division, Imphal has directed the Public Works Department of the Government of Manipur to plant 20 (twenty) number of saplings at appropriate locations of Greater Imphal area for cutting down of a tree near Johnstone Higher Secondary School without obtaining permission from the Forest department.

The DFO also directed the PWD to pay the value of the tree they cut as assessed by the Range Forest Officer, Sadar East. The PWD has been directed to deposit the value of the tree to the Government exchequer in the form of forest revenue.

However, when Imphal Times contacted the Forest department authority regarding the value of the tree that was cut down yesterday, the authority said that as of now there has not been any fixed value of a tree, however, the Supreme Court of India at one of its ruling had fixed value of trees grown in hectares. Source from the PWD said that the department will accept all form of punishment as per the law. 

Imphal Times reported about the cutting of the fully grown tree in the heart of Imphal city near a footpath adjacent to Johnstone Higher Secondary School by workers of PWD for convenience of lifting an iron bar for construction of the Footbridge. As per “the Guidelines for felling of trees from Non – Forests areas of Manipur” vide State Government notification dated March 1, 2002 and as per order of the Supreme Court of India (1995) cutting of trees without proper permit is punishable.

Meanwhile, Wildlife and Biodiversity Conservation Committee (WBCC) Manipur had slammed the PWD over its ignorance of “Green Mission Manipur” Campaign. In a statement, the WBCC questioned if Imphal area is excluded from the Green Mission Manipur. 

The committee expressed shock in learning the news of cutting of a fully grown tree at Imphal Times newspaper. The Committee urged the concerned government authority to take up adequate action against those people who cut the tree. It also said that if the concern authority fails to take action the Committee will go to the National Green Tribunal. 

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Imphal, Sept. 28

Social Welfare Minister Nemcha Kipgen called upon the attention of all stakeholders to nurture and mould the children to make them psychologically, mentally and physically fit to face this world confidently without any forms of atrocities towards them and be productive citizens of the state as well as the nation as a whole. This was stated by the Minister while addressing the gatherings as Chief Guest at the inaugural session of One Day State Level Training Program for Special Juvenile Police Units and ICPS Functionaries.

Nemcha Kipgen stresses that child rights are fundamental freedoms and the essential rights of all human beings below the age of 18 and it applies to every child, irrespective of the child’s race, color, sex, caste or creed. Children’s rights are the human rights of children with particular attention to the rights of special protection and care meant to minors, she added. She also exclaimed that children’s rights should be one of the main mandated priorities of everyone and be committed for their welfare and protection.

The Minister further expresses that children’s rights include the right to health, education, family life, play, recreation, an adequate standard of living and to be protected from any forms of atrocities. She felt that everyone should be committed with concerted efforts from all relevant local legislations, administrations and other measures on child rights and welfare to protect and ensure child rights as it is the collective tasks of all of us to ensure that the children realize its right.

Justice, Manipur High Court, Kh. Nobin Singh, Chairperson, Manipur Commission for Protection of Child Rights, Sumatibala Ningthoujam, Principal Secretary, Social Welfare, Government of Manipur, Vumlunmang Vualnam, Member Secretary, MASLSA, Golmei Gaiphulshillu, Director, Social Welfare, Government of Manipur, Ngangom Uttam Singh and Member Secretary, MCPCR, Bantee Singh Ningthoujam also graces the inaugural session as esteemed dignitaries.

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Bishnupur, Sept. 28

 Joining the nationwide observance of Swacchata Hi Seva 2019, Humanism Foundation has launched a cleanliness campaign today morning at its PMKVY Skill Development Center situated at Lakoipat here.
The campaign was launched in a simple function chaired by Thiyam Rajesh Singh, Secretary, BJP-Bishnupur District; Meena Chothe, Human Rights Activist and Wahengbam Rorrkychand Singh, Managing Trustee of Humanism Foundation.
The observance was attended by around 50 trainees of the skill development centre along with local leaders and jawans of Loktak Brigade.
As part of the observance, the trainees, staffs and dignitaries took an oath to devote 100 hours in a year in fulfilling the objectives of Swacchata Hi Seva and make their locality a single use plastic free zone.

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Chandel, Sept.28

Under the banner “Working together to prevent suicide”, District Mental Health Programme, District Health Society, Chandel organised “17th World Suicide Prevention Day 2019” at South East Manipur College (SEMCO), Kapham in Chandel District today.
The programme was graced by Chairman of Governing Body SEMCO, Kapaam Village Chief Roel Jindashing Moyon, Principal of South East Manipur College (SEMCO) Dr. L. Khiloni and Project Director of ABCDEOs Ujjawala Home as chief guest, president and guest of honour respectively.
At the event, Dr. Kh. Robindro District Nodal Officer (DNO) of District Mental Health Programme, Chandel said that factors such as depression, stress, anxiety and alcoholic addiction lead one to commit suicide. Risk of committing suicide among youth who are experiencing stress/ depression is high and they should seek help, Kh.Robindro said urging all to give proper attention and care to all that need help.
The programme today also witnessed the attendance of Teachers, Non Teaching Staffs of SEMCO and Students in the College.

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Chandel, Sept. 28

A preparatory meeting for the ensuing sitting of the National Commission For Protection Of Child Rights Bench on 18 /10/2019  in  Chandel District was chaired by Deputy commissioner Chandel,  Krishna Kumar, at the conference Hall, DC office Chandel on Friday. Speaking on the occasion Deputy commissioner Chandel, Krishna Kumar, said that it is the first time a bench of NCPCR  is going to have a sitting for taking complaints on violation of child rights in the district. He urged the DLOs and all the concern persons to take it seriously. He informed that Child Protection Officer of the district had been given the charge for receiving complaints in the district. On the sideline he asked the concerned person to take immediate action to fill up the vacant post of the Anganwadi workers so that proper implementation of food distribution in ICDS can be implemented.
Earlier Additional Deputy Commissioner, Dr. A. Chinlenkhomba Meitei briefed the gathering regarding the ensuing sitting of the NCPCR Bench in the district.
The Superintendent of Police Madhunimai informed that till date all cases under the juvenile justice act and POCSO acts have been expedited and there is no cases pending in the district.
Yesterday’s meeting was attended by DLOs and all the stakeholders of the district.
Earlier an all political parties and stake holders meeting was also held at the conference Hall, DC office Chandel in connection with the rationalization of polling stations in view of the upcoming ADC election in the district.

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Saturday, 28 September 2019 17:31

Let the ‘tree’ that was cut, be the last

Young minds across the globe today demanded immediate action to fight the climate crisis to their respective government. Some even left their school to protest against the inaction of the government over the nature’s rage. It was only yesterday that people across the globe witness thousands staging rally urging the global leaders to act for protection of the future and ironically it was amidst such a protest that Public Works Department of Manipur Government cut a fully grown tree in the middle of Imphal city just because it create hurdle in lifting an iron bar meant for construction of a Foot Bridge on High Way to bridge between the foot path of adjacent to Kanglapat and Johnston Higher Secondary School.  Thanks to the State Forest Department for acting tough. Now, as per an order of the department the Department of Forest , the PWD now have to plant 20 more sapling and will be nurturing until those are fully grown.

Human society needs development and the Foot Bridge being constructed is also the need of Imphalites for   public safety. While PWD need appreciation for construction of the Foot Bridge at different places, the educated and qualified employees should also have some sense of the climate crisis being face by the people of the globe. Something that need to make realize our engineers at PWD is that it takes days, weeks and months of caring a sapling to see it as a fully grown tree.

It is not only those qualified engineers that had forgotten about the future of their children. Almost everyone of us have forgotten that the earth may not be the right place for children if we continue committing crime against the nature.

Greed for materialistic world today has overshadowed the humane I human being. Forest land or Agricultural land are converted into Brick factories, resorts or store rooms. In their greed for money, today farmers are compelled to poison the land with chemical fertilizers and pesticides for boosting their crop product. When the reality is that the soil that they yielding more food crops today will turn into barren. It will be their children that will have to live on in such environment. Greed for comfort makes human - a crazy mindless criminal, be it to the environment or be it to their weak fellow human beings,  these mindless criminals commits every heinous crime in the name of their offspring, when in reality they do not know that they are leaving nothing for their children.  

It is worth mentioning that in 2015, South Delhi police registered a case against an owner of a house, situated in Jor Bagh, for allegedly cutting a tree inside his house. According to the police, a case under Section 24 of Delhi Preservation of Trees Act has been registered in Lodi Colony police station and intimation has been sent to the Delhi government’s forest department in this regard.

Leaving aside of the trees being cut down in the name of taking up developmental project, there has not been a single official report of any individuals being punished for cutting of trees in the state of Manipur even though the state government has adopted the Manipur Forest Rules , 1971.

Well let this incident of cutting tree in the name of development be the last not because there will be penalty but because we all love our children and their future. 

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Saturday, 28 September 2019 17:30

Nungleiband Massacre: From the diary of Editor

(A Report on how Manipuri people died at the hands of Indian Security Force)

Since Manipur was annexed by the Indian Union on 15th October 1949, numerous genocidal missions have been witness to wipe out the entire people of this state. There have been countless stories at which legends, history, culture and identity of the various ethnic people living in this part of the state are frequently attacked. However, the people remained helpless, as those shrewd policy makers at the mainland left no evidences of their dirty selfish minded work. As the old Manipuri saying goes; how long can you clothe the fire? Those same things hold the destiny of these unfortunate people. And it was during the middle and later part of 90s that many such aggressive genocidal missions against various ethnic communities of the state were conducted by the Indian Security force (or should I say the Indian occupational force) under the probable instructions of those shrewd mainland policy makers.
I have no fear to write the truth. The truth still shed tears to many parents and children of this state; though they had never committed any crimes.
This is about the story of how the Indian security force deployed in this trouble prone state, in the name of protecting the life the innocents’ people slaughtered nine civilians including a one year old baby besides beating black and blues to several others including women and children by cordoning a small Zaliangrong village at the crack of dawn on 15th of October 1997.
The heinous crime was committed by the Indian security personnel to the people of a small village called ‘Nungleiband’, which falls under Nungba constituency, a sub-division of Tamenglong District. It has a population of about 350 which lived in forty to fifty houses. The village is about 13 Kms from Bishempur Bazar. That was also the time when innocent civilians fall as victims at the outburst of factional clashed between one of the underground rebels belonging to Naga and the armed Kuki militants.
 The peace loving villagers of Nungleiband were not aware of what destiny would hold them at the crack of dawn on 15th October, 1997. When the people of this state mourned in frustration as the merger of this independent nation to the Indian Union falls on this date, the policy makers seem to have instructed the security forces deployed in the region to show their strength.
 Factional clash which caused tremendous suffering to the innocent people of both the so called Naga and Kukis was just about to settle with efforts from various civil societies’ organization during the year 1997. At the same time the other faction was busy trying to enter peace deal with the Indian government. However, to the fears of any unwanted incidents, those villages scattered at the lofty hills of Manipur had to guard themselves with every kinds of ammunitions that they have as the government authority turns deaf ear to their cried for security (maybe the authorities have reason to remain deaf ear to their plea).   
The sun was just to set, and the tireless village guards at Nungleiband entry seem relief as they watch the time, until one of them spotted some persons in combat dress holding automatic weapons advanced toward the village after breaking the gate at Leimatak Bridge constructed by the local men. On seeing them the guard shouted to them to identify themselves as to whether they were Kukis or Nagas or Indian Army. However, the guard received no reply from them. Instead, they continued to march towards the village by targeting their guns toward them. In no seconds delayed, the approaching group started firing at him as well as towards the village. On hearing the sound of the fires, the natives ran helter-skelter to protect themselves by gathering their young ones at their back in haste. The attack was so brutal and inhuman that all the bullets released from their firearms killed and injured many innocent lives including children.
 After indiscriminate firing for not less than four hours, one villager detected a person speaking in Hindi amongst the attackers. And having learnt that they were not Kukis, she stood up shouting to them to stop firing and she affirmed in the negative that, they were all innocent villagers. Amid the attack, she also kept shouting to he villagers to come out as the attackers were all Indian Army. At this moment, one personnel from amongst the attackers cried in a low voice in Manipuri insisting her to stop shouting and duped her that they were none other than Kukis and not the Indian Army. But she carried on her “Blare” as before even though she was threatened to be shot dead by that personnel. (When the attack was on, one villager puts it that even domestic animals were not spared. The rustlings of leaves were fired upon mistaking it to be the sound produced by the fleeing villagers. Most belongings kept in the house were all looted including those dried meat preserved for daily meals. But the Army maintained that none of them took those things as they were all Hindus).
A moment later, some locals came out and the firing also ceased. Then after rounding up and holding the villagers in, Army personnel ran sacked the entire village and took away many valuable things including money (cash). The surviving villagers were subjected to inhuman torturers and were also forced to collect the dead and the injured to load them in Army trucks. Instead of giving prompt medical aids to the injured, the Army personnel subjected them to tortures by pulling them down in pretence to taking photos. Unable to bear those sufferings, a middle aged woman and a seven years old girl succumbed to their injuries before any medical aid was administered to them. Four male members of the village were also taken to the army camp at Bishnupur, along with six dead bodies including the two. The two males were tied, blindfolded all the time. They were identified as K. Makuduanpou (40) s/o K. Mathiuripou and Th. Gaishingpou (20) s/o Th. Adai. Both are from Nungleiband Kabui village. On reaching the army camp the two blindfolded persons were made to put on army uniforms and was captured on film in that dress. On the same day, 15 Oct.’97, at about 8 p.m., the four of them along with seven lifeless bodies were made over to the Bishnupur police. While handing over the four injured and all the dead bodies to the police, the security personnel collected the uniforms which were given to those two persons and returned the clothes to them.
 Autopsy of those dead bodies were done at Bishnupur Mortuary on the next day (16 October, ’97). But their relatives refused to take the bodies back. Irate people numbering 400, demonstrated before Bishnupur Police Station against the killings. With tears on their eyes, the angry women, mostly relatives to the deceased manhandled and slapped several army officials, including a colonel just in front of police. However following a negotiations with the Minister of State (Home), M. Oken, the family welfare Minister D.P. Panmei, the DIG (Hills range) A. Romenkumar and Gaikhangam Kabui, political Advisor to the chief minister of that time, the dead bodies were at last, taken in with tears by the near and dear ones.
 Another dead body with three injured persons was also discovered from nearby jungles. Those slaughtered by the bullets of the Indian Army in this tragic incident are Master Pintubui (13) s/o Thailungpou, a student of class VII, Mr. Lungthoupou (40) s/o Meilunglung, the pastor of the village( at the time he was survived by his wife and 8 children aged between 17 years and 1 year), Mr. Pouluanthui (20) s/o Mathujokpou (at the time he was survived by his wife and a child (3 months old) male), Miss Jianthuiliu (15) d/o Lanjailung a tender girl of class VIII, Mrs. Regina Kabidonliu (30) an anganwadi worker of the village w/o Nambina (at the time she was survied by her husband and 5 minor children ranging from 12 years to 1 year), Mrs. Sadana (25) w/o Sachungam (at the time she was survived by her husband and a boy of 3 years and a twin (one boy and one girl) of 5 months), Baby Gaichuipuiliu 7 years d/o Peishunlung, one year old Baby Meijianthuiliu, d/o Chaikhinlung. And those injured were Smt. Zengailiu, (28), w/o Chaikhinlung, she undergoes month long treatment because of severe bullet injury on the chest. Another person who sustained bullet injury on the buttock was Mr. Poujokdai (36), s/o Guidinlung. Jangthailung, s/o Thailungpou, of the same village sustained severe bullet injury on the hands. There were also a number of injured villagers who were not given proper medical treatments.
After negotiation was brought between the villagers and the government authorities the dead bodies were then accompanied by the DC and SP, Tamenglong, SDPO Bishnupur and CO. of 7th MR till Nungleiband village on the following day. The mass funeral was held on the evening of 17 October,1997.
Regarding the incident Bishnupur Police registered FIR No.84 (10) 97, BPR-PS U/S 121/121-A/307/341 PC, 25(1-8) A. Act. And R-3 UAP Act, lodged by the Army as well as FIR No. 85(10)97BPR-PS U/S 302/307/326/386/327/34 IPC and 27 A. Act lodged by the people in respect of the inhuman crime.
 Unfortunately, the Army blindly charged that 5 of the dead were underground personnel and that the firing was between the underground and the Army. The raid was conducted following some specific information there. Four 12 bore rifles, some ammunition, explosives, uniforms, diaries, letters and photographs were recovered from the spot. According to defense release, the army mourned the death of innocents and conveyed their condolences to the bereaved families. On the other hand, the villagers charged that the army personnel made many false allegations to substantiate and cover up their illegal, inhuman acts. They further claimed that, they have seriously violated the right to life and liberty of the villager guaranteed under the constitution of India and have committed unpardonable crimes against the State as well as the Union of India, It is quite interesting to learn from reliable source that the 4 (Four) personnel who work for the army and might probably involved in the crime were kept in the custody of G.O.C. 57 Mountain Division, and since then their where about were not let known to anybody.
Before any legal action was carried out against the army, what kept surprising was that the defense personnel says that Col. Anil Gairola, CO, of the army unit who was involved in killing and torturing of the innocent civilians of the Nungleiband Village was reported to have died when his weapon went of suddenly and his vehicle fell into a ditch while negotiating a gradient on the way to Nungleiband. But local residence of the area said that on the sad day, no one had heard any gun shots or any kind of army vehicles caught in accident on the reported spot.

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Saturday, 28 September 2019 17:28

AR conducts Edu tour to Indian Peace Memorial

IT News
Imphal, Sept 28

Tulihal Battalion of 9 Sector Assam Rifles under the aegis of IGAR (South) organised an educational tour for the students of Oinam Girls High School, to India Peace Memorial and Museum at Maibam Lokpaching on 27 September 2019.  
The educational tour was organised by Nambol Company Operating Base (COB) to acquaint the students with the rich historical background of Manipur with particular focus on the Battle of Red Hill and for overall development of the school students.  
Over 120 students participated in the educational tour. The tour commenced with a lecture at the Indian Peace Memorial where the students were briefed about the Battle of Red Hill fought at the location from 21 May to 29 May 1944 during the World War -II.  They were narrated on the sequence and events leading to the fierce battle fought between the British Indian Army and the Japanese forces during the World War in Imphal. The students also paid tribute to the departed souls by observing two minutes silence at the Memorial.   
The students were then taken to the India Peace Museum which exhibits valuable personal notes and photographs donated by those who have fought and survived the war, giving a glimpse of the past.  
The tour concluded with tea and refreshments for students and teachers of Oinam Girls High School. Both teachers and the students applauded the efforts of Assam Rifles for organising the educational tour and requested for more such initiatives in future as well.

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