Manipur Chief Minister N Biren on Wednesday termed the killing of Naphai village chief a “cowardly act” and said the government will not spare miscreants involved in it. The culprit will be arrested befitting punishment will be given
“The investigation is on full swing to know the whereabouts of the culprits… the culprit will be nab soon and befitting punishment will be given as per the law,” Biren said while speaking at the launching of the five GPS enabled Highway Patrol Vehicles for the Imphal-Moreh road, in front of his secretariat in Imphal West.
The chief minister, however, said the killing is not linked with the banning of the poppy plantation by the village chief.
"As per intelligence report, the murder is not related with the banning of poppy plantation. It is reported to be related with some personnel issue," Biren said.
As told to the Imphal Free Press reporter, the village chief identified as Zilhem Khongsai was reportedly shot in his chest after being called out from his house by unknown miscreants at around 11.50 pm Monday. He was rushed to a nearby health centre, but succumbed to his injuries on the way, his wife said.
The body is kept at RIMS morgue after conducting post-mortem as his family members refuse to collect the body until the culprits are arrested. They had given the government a two days’ time to arrest the unknown culprits.
According to the wife of the deceased, Chinneilhing, her husband had no enmity with anyone, but he issued a notification in May to ban poppy cultivation in his village area in support to the state government's mission to abolish poppy plantation from Manipur.