After 13 years, the Manipur police has finally filed a charge sheet against two accused involved in the murder case of mother-daughter duo Chanbi (39) and her daughter Meneka (16).
Chanbi of Phayeng Chingkhong and her daughter Meneka were murdered after being abducted from their house in the intervening night of 12 and 13 January 2010. Their decomposed bodies were found on 23 January 2010 by some locals at Shampha paddy field which is just about a kilometre from their house.
Lamsang Police Station registered a suo-moto FIR case under Section 302 and 34 Indian Penal Code (IPC) in connection with the duo’s murder. It may be noted that during the session of Manipur Legislative Assembly on March 8, 2010, citing the police report, the then Chief Minister, Okram Ibobi Singh, informed the House that “one of the insurgent groups was behind the murder.”
But the investigation was never completed for more than 13 years despite entrusting the investigation to eight (8) Investigating Officers namely (1). SI H Chaoba Singh, (2). SI Ch Bikram, (3) SI Ph Okenjit, (4) SI M Conquor Singh, (5) SI S Dollar Meitei, (6) SI S Gobin Kumar, (7) SI N Premjit Singh and (8) SI A Sukumar Singh.
It may also be mentioned that the Women Action for Development (WAD) presented seventeen (17) cases of crime against women including the murder case of Chanbi and Meneka before a tribunal held in May, 2016 at Hotel Classic, Imphal with two jury members comprising of Jurice WK Shishak, retired Chief Justice of Chhattisgarh, also the former chairperson of the Manipur Human Rights Commission (MHRC) and KS Subramanian, former Director General of Police in North East India.
Due to lame police action, Sobita Mangsatabam, secretary of WAD, approached the MHRC, in August 2019, asking the Commission “to find the culprit.”
Acting on the complaint filed by secretary, WAD, the MHRC registered a complaint case being No 117 of 2019 and directed the Director General of Police (DGP), Manipur to submit report after detailed enquiry.
For the first time after 2019, MHRC Chairperson Justice UB Saha, chairperson and member KK Singh took up the matter on 23 March 2023 and asked the DGP, Manipur to submit a status report of the FIR cases No. 6(1)2010 Lamsang Police Station which was registered in 2010.
The MHRC, in its proceedings held on May 3, 2023, observed that “till date the IO of the case did not complete the investigation of the FIR case.” Then, the MHRC summoned the Superintendent of Police, Imphal West and IO of the Case SI S Sukumar Singh.
The MHRC directed the SP, Imphal West to personally supervise the investigation and also inform the family members regarding the delay of investigation.
During the pendency of the case, SI S Sukumar Singh arrested two accused persons namely, Angom Ingojao Singh (60) and Leichombam Tarponjao Singh, both from Phayeng, in connection with the murder case and they are detained under judicial custody. SI Sukumar Singh also filed a charge-sheet against them for committing murder and rape.
The MHRC finally took up the case on September 4, 2023. SI S Sukumar Singh, who appeared before the Commission, informed that he has filed the charge sheet before the concerned court.
Appreciating the IO who could complete the investigation in a time bound manner, the MHRC asked the DGP, Manipur to consider some reward to SI Sukumar as he deserves.