Imphal, Feb 13:
Gun battles between the armed Kuki militants and village volunteers have persisted until late this afternoon in the Shantipur Village area of the Khundrakpam Assembly constituency. Heavily armed Kuki militants reportedly began attacking the Shantipur Village area from nearby Kanchi Ching using bombs at around 9:30 PM on February 10, 2024. The attack has continued till today with mortar bombs and gunshots. However, with the village volunteers defending with all their might, the militants’ attempts to occupy the village have been resisted.
“They have been firing without a break for even an hour since the evening of February 10, and they still have bullets, bombs, etc. and continue firing and bombing until this afternoon,” a village volunteer told Imphal Times. The volunteers, having run out of bullets for their guns, resorted to picking up stones and pelting them at the militants.
“None of us are running away from here, even though they continue to attack us with sophisticated weapons and bombs. Though we are left with limited barrel bullets, we will use all traditional weapons to protect our land from the Kuki militants,” the village volunteer said.
At least two Meitei volunteers were reported injured after being hit by bullets fired by the Kuki militants. One was hit in the hand, while the other was hit in the leg.
Shantipur Village is just one kilometer from Kanchi Ching, where the Kuki militants attacked. Half a kilometer from there is Pukhoa. “They have fired and bombarded, but we, the male folk, will not run away. We will fight until our last drop of blood,” the village volunteer told Imphal Times.
Close to the area is a post of Assam Rifles, and nearby is a police station. There has been no official word from the security forces about the attack on the villagers in Shantipur Village from the government side, even though it has been ongoing for three days.
Yesterday, two village volunteers were reported injured in the attack by the armed Kuki militants.
Reports suggest that there are possibilities of the Kuki militants reinforcing to occupy the village in the Khundrakpam Assembly constituency.