Five injured as police teargas protesters in Manipur

Imphal, May 20 (IANS) Five people, including three women, were injured when they were hit by teargas shells fired by police during a 38-hour shutdown in Manipur that began on Friday morning.

The police action came after hundreds of protesters marched on Friday afternoon from Kwakeithel and nearby areas towards the secretariat to demand presidential assent to three bills already passed by the Manipur assembly.

Police in riot gear tried to stop the processionists near the Keishampat crossing but the marchers were adamant on moving ahead. Police then burst teargas shells to disperse the crowd.

Earlier, the shutdown — which began at 4 a.m. on Friday and will continue till 6.p.m. on Saturday — paralysed normal life across Manipur. The shutdown has been called by supporters of the three anti-migrant bills.

On Friday, roads were deserted and markets and business centres were closed. Government offices, educational institutes and other facilities also remained shut.

The latest shutdown comes shortly after a 48-hour general strike in the hill districts of Manipur to protest against the three bills termed by tribals as “anti-tribal”.

There will be another 24-hour “public curfew” from Sunday midnight to protest the failure of police to nab three accused who fired at and injured 14 people at Nungei in Thoubal district last month.

–IANS

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