Demanding justice for late Serto Thangthang Kom who was reportedly kidnapped and murdered on Sunday, the Kom community on Monday staged a statewide protest across various Kom-inhabited areas.
The protests were held at various places, including Litan Kom area, Sagang Kom area, Moirang Mathak Kom area, Thayong Kom area, Sinam Kom area and other Kom-inhabited areas in Greater Imphal.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Biren Singh has assured the Kom Union Manipur justice for the deceased.
Retired Army jawan of 8th Assam Regiment, Serto Thangthang, who was re-employed as Defense Service Crops (DSC) at Leimakhong Army camp, was reportedly abducted by unknown miscreants at around 10:15 am on Saturday from his residence located at Happy Valley Road near Neikanlong under Lamphel Police Station.
The next day, i.e., on Sunday, the family members got the news that his body was found near Khuningthek under Sagolmang Police station at around 8 am. The police team recovered the body and deposited it at JNIMS morgue.
Demanding justice for Thangthang, a statewide protest was staged at different areas of Kom-inhabited areas.
One of the protesters, M Achung Kom, who is also chief of Thayong village under Sagolmang subdivision, told the media on the sideline of the protest held in the village that the Kom community strongly condemned the killing of Thangthang without giving any warning.
He said, the Kom community has been living in the state along with other indigenous communities of Manipur and despite being a minority, the community has been playing a major role to save the integrity of Manipur.
Achung said those unknown miscreants who killed Thangthang should clarify to the public why he was killed.
He further appealed to the people of Manipur not to mislead the Kom community that could harm the community.
The protesters held placards that read, “stop killing”, “Kom tribe is an indigenous community of Manipur”, “arrest the culprit”, “we want protection for the Kom community”, “we want justice” and others.
In connection with the incident, KUM met CM Biren Singh and submitted a memorandum on Monday.
During the meeting, the CM assured that the government will book the culprits involved in the crime, to provide a suitable government job to one of the family members of late Serto Thangthang Kom, additional security forces will be deployed at Kom-inhabited areas and a sum of Rs 5 lakh will be given as monetary assistance to the victim’s family.
Later, KUM informed that the union will be looking forward to the assurance of the chief minister and will accept the body for the last rite.