Imphal scribes launch sit-in protest against bomb threat

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Imphal, Dec 27 (IANS) The entire community of editors and reporters in Imphal launched a sit-in agitation from 10 a.m. till 4 p.m. on Tuesday to protest against the bomb threat against local editors a day ago.

The newspapers came out with blank editorials on Tuesday.

There will be no local newspapers on Wednesday.

The protesting scribes said that a Chinese hand grenade was left in the office of the Pandam evening newspaper.

A caller who identified himself as a cadre of Kangleipak Communist Party (Military Council) (KCP-MC) informed the newspaper staff that a bomb was left inside its office.

The management immediately informed the police, who rushed to the office.

Police found a tiny hand grenade stuffed inside a polythene bag.

A hand-written note found along with the grenade said: “This is a New Year gift to the editors.”

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No other explanation was given.

The editors in Manipur who immediately held an emergency meeting, strongly condemned the incident.

A spokesperson said: “The scribes are working round the clock to serve the people and it is condemnable that we should be the targeted.”

The All-Manipur Working Journalists’ Union has also strongly condemned the incident.

While the scribes were on protest, someone called the functionaries of the Editors’ Guild of Manipur, claiming that he was speaking from KCP (MC).

He reportedly said that the KCP MC had no hand in the planting of the grenade. Police has registered a case.

Some editors and reporters were killed and seriously wounded in the past in insurgency hit Manipur.

There is a permanent protest site in the heart of Imphal for the scribes who have been at the receiving end.

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