By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL | June 7
Manipur chief minister Nongthombam Biren Singh has today constituted an inquiry committee to probe supply of poor quality belts to the state police department.
Addressing a press conference this evening the chief minister displayed before media persons the poor quality belts supplied to the police department. The chief minister did not find it difficult to tear the belts.
The inquiry committee will he headed by Dr Suhel Akhtar IAS, Additional Chief Secretary with R Sudhan IAS, Special Secretary and Dr S. Ibocha Singh IPS, IGP (Administration) as members.
The committee is given one month time to submit their report.
Biren Singh said the supplier has been black listed and the godown of the supply agency identified as M/S Abdul Gani Khan has been sealed.
Biren further said on receipt of reports about supply of poor quality materials particularly belts in police department after the issue was circulated in social media, he directed the Monitoring Cell of the state government to inspect the central stores of the police department located inside 1 st Manipur Rifles campus and the district store located in the office complex of Imphal West Superintendent of Police.
It has been reported that the additional chief secretary (home) Suresh Babu and director general of police L. M. Khaute along with two members of the Monitoring Cell conducted verification of the stocks and collected various items including belts.
“The team felt that there is need for further detailed enquiry as the belts supplied are of poor quality and inferior to the samples produced at the time of tender,” the chief minister said.
On further enquiry, the police headquarters ascertained that the supply was made during the year 2013-14.
Subsequently, Biren Singh personally visited the stores along with the additional chief secretary (home) and the police chief.
Maintaining that his government takes the matter very seriously, Biren said that an enquiry was ordered into the quality and quantity of various items procured to find out people responsible for the lapses, if any.
The Chief Minister said government will take befitting action anyone found guilty in the scam.
He said at a time when the government is trying its best to boost the morale of the law enforcing agency forces, who are selflessly discharging their duty in order to safeguard the public, the finding is disturbing.
The Chief Minister further warned that his government will not tolerate any irregularities in any of the departments particularly law enforcing ones which is considered as a special category.
Condolence: Biren Singh has deeply condoled Major David Manlun’s death in a gunfight with militants in Mon district of Nagaland yesterday.
Major David Manlun was an officer of 164 Brigade of the Territorial Army. Although, he originally hailed from Churachandpur district, he had settled with his family in Shillong.
The tragic incident took place when a security team led by Major David Manlun went to interior Lappa village in Mon district of Nagaland after receiving specific information about the presence of militants there.
In his condolence message, the Chief Minister said, “We are proud of the valour of Major David Manlun. He was martyred for the country fighting with militants and his sacrifice will not go in vain.”
Expressing grief over the demise, Biren said that the entire State and country share the sorrow of Major David’s family, friends and colleagues.
From Our Correspondent
KANGPOKPI |June 7
The crack at Kalikhola area in Kangpokpi district has already affected a land of 5km radius approximately with the fissure widening every passing hour. More than 250 victims now sheltered at a temporary relief camp are facing water and power problems apart from other difficulties.
One house near the PMGSY road at Kalikhola collapsed this morning while more paddy fields and huge trees have caved in. Two huge water logs have been formed near the same village today.
The origin of the fissure is below J Songtun village and it is still slowly sliding down towards Kalikhola village developing larger fissure in the areas. The PMGSY road connecting IT Road and Kalapahar via Makuli has also been sliding down to 300 metres from the original site including the bridge and retaining wall constructed along the road while all water pipelines has been dismantled.
All the villagers of Kalikhola have been evacuated but many properties are yet to be shifted completely. The funds which have been sought by the district administration for disaster management is reportedly yet to be received till today.
J. Songtun village situated above Kalikhola village is in more dangerous position if in case a landslide unfortunately occurs. The village could be easily swept down since the origin of the earth fissure is below the village.
Alongside the locals fear that the river flowing through Kalapahar could overflow following the water logging at two places that was formed this morning in the village due to the widening of the fissures.
Meantime, Subhash Chhetry, secretary of Kalikhola village, told the media that out of 30 households 28 households have already sheltered in the relief camp while other households were attached in relative and friends’ houses.
He also said that apart from many other grievances, there immediate need is drinking water and power supply. He urged the authority concerned to urgently look into their problems.
The district administration is minutely monitoring the situation of the earth fissure every minute.
The district administration urged the villagers of Kalikhola to vacate their homes and stay at the relief camp open by the government or stay with their relatives because the village is going to sink any time.
“The village is on the verge of being wiped out immediately because of the cracks which can trigger a massive landslide that came wipe out villages around Kalikhola,” an official said.
Today one more house was completely destroyed by the fissure. Officials warn more houses will be damaged.
By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL | June 7
Khongbantabam Hitler’s father Kh Imocha said that his son is not the real murderer of Soram (O) Lakhipriyari and Soram Monica.
According to a release by the Imphal West, Superintendent of Police on June 4, Hitler confessed to have committed the crime.
On the evening of the same day, Hitler’s house was vandalised by an angry mob.
Addressing a press meet today at Manipur Press Club, Imphal Imocha said they remained silent thinking that the government will investigate the case genuinely and ultimately find the culprits.
Instead, the government has made his son a scapegoat so as to control the public outrage over the twin killing.
Imocha claimed that on May 30 his son came from his shop located at Mantripukhri to one of his friend’s house at Nagamapal Thingel at around 2.30 pm. Afterwards he came to one of his friend’s house at Uripok Bachaspati Leikai at around 3.15 pm where he watched TV for around five minutes.
The father added that after few minutes his son went out and waited in his vehicle for his friend who came out after five minutes. Then they reversed the vehicle as there was insufficient space at around 3.30 pm and it was raining heavily at that time.
During which they saw Soram Tomba blowing his vehicle’s horn at his gate but they continued to reverse till they reached the proper road as it is unusual to ask why he was honking at his gate, continued Imocha.
He asked “how can a murder of two persons be committed in five minutes by one individual without getting wet and without having any blood stain in his clothes?”
Imocha also asked how the deceased persons were found holding a long hair when Hitler always maintains a very short cut.
On the other hand why the police are not using the fingerprint found in the weapon used in the killing and the fingerprint in the wall, he asked.
He further said that on June 4 at around 9.11 am a police officer called up Hitler’s elder brother to bring Hitler’s mobile phone. They delivered the phone to the police station.
And how come the police said that his mobile phone along with a mask was recovered from the crime scene, Imocha wondered.
He continued that they want justice for his son.
By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL | June 7
A low intensity Improvised Explosive Device (IED) exploaded this evening at around 6.58 pm in front of Mahavir Medicos located at Thangal Bazar, Imphal West near Kasturi bridge which is under the jurisdiction of City Police.
During the blast a salesman of the medical store identified as one Waikhom Rakesh 38 son of W Indramani of Kontha Khabam Heibong Makhong got minor injuries in his left arm.
The medical store was owned by one Ajay Kumar Jain 43 son of Kundanmal Jain of Thangal Bazar Old Assembly Road.
Some front part of the medical store got damaged by the blast.
A team of forensic experts came and investigated the place of the blast.
From the comment of the owner there was no threat such as money demand by anyone in the past.
Later the Chief Minister N Biren Singh along with DGP LM Khaute visited the spot and a case has been registered by the City Police.
By Reena Nongmaithem
Angaan Ching Eco Park of Kakching, one of the tourist attractions has been preserving indigenous plants of the state including threatened ones, at the same time protecting the environment.
Alliance for Development Alternative Manipur (ADAM) has taken the initiative to develop the park at the hill slopes situated at the southern part of Kakching, popularly known as Maning Mahadeva Ching since 2003.
Currently more than 300 different species and varieties of plants are growing in the park while nearly 5000 plants of indigenous, medicinal and traditional herbs, fruit bearing trees and others have been planted so far, co-ordinator of the management committee of the park, Ksh Surjit claimed.
Talking to Imphal Free Press Surjit said due to unavailability of water sources nearby, the management committee is finding it difficult to maintain the park. The water resource went away when the lone water pump was submerged after the MSPDCL occupied the site at the eastern side of Mahadeva Ching and had been sealed.
“It has been a challenging task for caretakers,” he said appealing to the MSPDCL authority to open the sealed and avail the water pump for public use.
For installation of the power sub-station at the then administrative block, more than 100 fully grown indigenous and fruit bearing tress were cleaned out in 2015.
This led to suspension of activities at the park for two years till Sunday Eco Club, one of the main activists stepped in and the eco movement was re-launched on April 9 this year.
Surjit thanked former Kakching DC and now Director Education (S) Th Krankumar saying “because of the re-launching under the initiative of District Administration Kakching, the movement for protecting the environment gains momentum.
The State of Environment Report 2006 had recommended for developing the park as eco tourism and biodiversity conservation centre.
Despite the recommendation about 100 fully grown trees mainly pine trees were cut in 2015-2016 at the western aspect of Angaan Ching in the name of construction of road from foot hill to top under MGNERGA.
Surjit appealed to government agencies to stop destruction of environment in the name of development.
At present more than 50 fully grown flowering trees are growing at the straight road sides along Kakching Turel Wangma to Ching ani karak connecting Tezpur and the eco-park have been threatened as branches of the trees are being cut regularly to stop them reaching the high tension electric wire stretching above the trees, he worried.
He said that the trees were planted in 2004 while the wires were put up in 2016.
Electric posts could have been erected a little bit aside, he complained and said it is really painful to see trees in such situations.
Surjit appealed to both government agencies and surrounding individuals to join hands in advancing the ecologically sustainable movement through the park.
By A Staff Reporter
IMPHAL | June 7
The Imphal West district police commandos seized a huge consignment of tobacco items worth over Rs 8 lakhs late last night.
Addressing media persons at the commando complex Minuthong, Imphal West SP Themthing Ngashangva said that the consignment was intercepted at around 10.15 pm at Uripok Khoisnam Leikai during random frisking and checking activities.
The consignment was intercepted by the team of S Birla Singh of Imphal West commandos led by Inspector P Achouba Meetei officer in-charge Police Commando Imphal West and Deputy SP (Ops) Imphal West Thangkhochon Haokip under the supervision of Dr S Ibomcha Singh MPS, Additional SP Imphal West.
The consignment was brought in a Tata ACE white in colour and was detained by the frisking team owing to their suspicious movement, said the SP.
He said the two occupants of the vehicles were also detained and conducted spot verification.
They have been identified as Premchand Prajapati, 37, son of Sudama Prajapati of Uttar Pradesh, Ballia District, Athilapura village at present staying at rented house of one Gogon Bihari of Waheng Leikai who is the driver of the vehicle Khunjamayum Jhalajit Singh, 41, son Kh Rajmani Singh of Thangmeiband Hijam Dewan Leikai.
Themthing Ngashangva further informed that Prajapati confessed to have engaged in transportation of tobacco products while Jhalajit Singh revealed that the articles belonged to one Kishore Prasad, 32, of Sitamarhi District Bihar at present staying at Ngari Galli and also a co-partner.
Ngashangva maintained that as transportation, sales, storage, distribution etc of smokeless tobacco products containing nicotine food ingredients are completely banned under certain regulations of Food Safety and Standards (Prohibition and Regulation on sales) Regulation, 2011, the two transporters were detained along with the items they were carrying.
He said that the tobacco products’ actual cost is just over Rs 8 lakhs but its market value is estaimated to be about 12 lakhs.
While the arrested persons have been handed over to Imphal Police station, the products will be handed over to food safety department.
The SP further informed that the drive against tobacco will continue further.
IMPHAL| June 7
Eleven persons including seven small children studying in primary level, sustained injuries, one of them seriously, when a truck collided with an auto-rickshaw at Yorabung under Lamlai PS, Imphal East at around 1.30 PM today.
The auto was carrying the seven children and two lady teachers.
The two drivers and two teachers were also injured and admitted to Raj Medicity, North AOC, JNIMS hospital, Porompat and PHC Sawombung by localities.
The condition of Hidam Kaiku (7) studying in Class I is serious and the child is currently in the intensive care unit at Raj Medicity, police said. All the injured children are below 10 years.
The incident occurred when the children with their tuition teachers were returning from a recreation trip.
IMPHAL | June 7
National Peoples’ Party (NPP) today welcomed five councillors of Lilong Municipal Council who joined the party. A reception function held at Classic Hotel to welcome them.
All the four NPP ministers warmly welcomed the councillors.
Speaking at the function IFC minister Letpao Haokip reminded the audience that the secular feature of the party and assured them to keep alive the spirit of secularism in future.
Tribal affairs and fisheries minister N. Kayissi appealed to them to uphold the integrity towards the party in order to strengthen the roots of the party and also to carry out all the responsibilities equally.
Health and family welfare minister L Jayantakumar said in order to uphold the integrity of the state the only key is love and understanding between the members of the party. Therefore, he appealed them to respect among the members of the party.
As a chief guest Dy CM Y. Joykumar Singh said that his step indicates the future of the party and appealed to them to have integrity.
The councillors are Imran Ahmed vice-chancellor ward number 1, Ayeed Ahamed councillor ward number 2, Ajmal Nisa councillor ward number 3, Abdul Barik councillor ward number 6 and Wahengbam Meenakumari councillor ward number 9.
CHURACHANDPUR | June 7
Relief material in terms of essential commodities was provided by the troops of Churachandpur Battalion under the aegis of Hq 27 sector and Kuki Women Union, to the villagers of T Natjang, Ukhrul district.
Currently the villagers are taking shelter at S Molcham, Churachandpur due to alleged threat from NSCN (IM). The displaced villagers were are also visited yesterday by minister V Hangkhanlian given them essential commodities from the side of the government.
IMPHAL | June 7
Commerce and Industries Minister Th Biswajit has instructed the implementing agencies of Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme to implement the scheme systematically in the state, so that the department could generate more employment in the state.
Chairing a review meeting of the department at his office conference hall at New Secretariat, Biswajit said that Commerce and Industries department is targeting to generate 3000 employment and loopholes in implementing the scheme will delay in generating employment.
He also stressed to review the Task Force Screening Committee for selecting genuine beneficiaries for PMEGP scheme. Biswajit expressed dismay over the failure to achieve target project. There are 4434 pending cases of PMEGP for the year 2016-2017 and the target project of PMEGP for the year 2017-2018 is 717.
He further instructed the officials to re-verify beneficiaries of the pending cases and asked to provide the PMEGP scheme to genuine beneficiaries at the earliest, and warned to take stern action against those officials whose misdeed is found regarding implementation of PMEGP scheme.
The minister also asked all District General Managers to highlight their grievances and lack of infrastructure and man-powers in their concerned centres. Regarding Livelihood Business Incubators, he said Central government has sanctioned to establish 7 LBIs in the state out of 20 throughout the country and official concerned should start full functioning of LBIs in the state.
During the meeting official of Thoubal highlighted that lack of basic inputs and delay in fund flow hamper functioning of IBLs. Speaking in the meeting principal secretary of Trade, Commerce and Industries L Lakher said Industries department is an important department and urge all general managers to take active initiative in strengthening District Industries Centres.
As all equipment has been set up in all LBIs, he asked General Managers to make it fully operational. Director of Trade, Commerce and Industries M. Luikham highlighted that lack of manpower is the main problem in full functioning of LBIs.
Biswajit also informed that all LBIs should have equal number of machineries and asked officials of MFICL to distribute lemon grass plants to farmers at the earliest. He also appealed to all to work systematically without keeping any pending work.
All District General Managers, officials of Commerce and Industries department, officials of MFICL and beneficiaries were also present in the meeting.