Village chief killed for opposing poppy cultivation
The chief of Naiphai village had issued a notification to prohibit poppy cultivation before he was killed by unidentified armed miscreants.
Updated 8 Jun 2022, 12:52 pm
A village chief, who had issued a notification to prohibit poppy cultivation in his village, was shot dead by unidentified armed miscreants at Saikul sub-division in Kangpokpi district late Monday, sources said.
The sources said the deceased Jilhem Khongsai, 57, son of (L)Thongthang Khongsai of Naphai village under Saikul police station, was sleeping when he was visited by unknown persons and taken outside at around 11.30 pm Monday, his wife Chinneilhing informed the Imphal Free Press.
She said that soon after her husband, chief of Naphai village, was taken outside, sounds of gunshots were heard twice. When her family rushed outside, Zilhem was found lying on the ground with bullet injuries on his chest at a distance of around 300 meters from the house, she said.
He was rushed to a community health centre (CHC) at Saikul but succumbed to his injuries at around 1.15 am, she added.
Jilhem had issued a notification in May last week to prevent poppy cultivation in his area, in support of the state government’s initiative to abolish poppy farming in the state, she added.
His wife asked the killers if her husband did not deserve even one chance to make amends in case he had wronged anyone. Jilhem Khongsai is survived by his wife, four daughters and four sons.
According to Saikul Police Station, the incident happened at an area located 20 km from the police station. From the crime scene, an empty case of SBBL was found, the police said.
Meanwhile, although the post-mortem examination has been conducted, the family has declined from collecting the body from RIMS mortuary with the demand that the killers must be arrested within two days.
The decision not to collect the body was taken in a public meeting at Khongsai Veng in Imphal East on Tuesday. It was also resolved that unless the culprits are arrested within the given time, another meeting will be held to decide the further course of action to be taken.
The family of the deceased had reportedly lodged an FIR at Saikul Police Station in connection with the killing on the same night the incident took place.