NPP candidates attacked with explosives in Manipur

Gate of NPP candidate from Khurai AC where a blast rocked Thursday morning
Gate of NPP candidate from Khurai AC where a blast rocked Thursday morning

At least two National People’s Party (NPP) candidates were targeted with explosives and arms as poll related violence continues unabated in the poll-bound Manipur.

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Miscreants triggered a powerful blast at the gate of the NPP candidate in Khurai constituency of Imphal East district early morning on February 24 while a candidate of the same party from Mayang Imphal assembly constituency in Imphal West district was attacked with arms on February 23 night. No casualty was reported in both the poll related incidents.

Reports said that miscreants triggered the bomb at the gate of the residence of NPP candidate Laitonjam Jayananda Singh from Khurai constituency at Epum Khongbal under Porompat police station on February 24 morning, around 3.30 am. The impact of the blast destroyed a polling booth of the candidate.  Local sources said that the bomb was planted by a man who came on a scooter.

Porompat police lodged a suo-motu case and initiated an investigation to find out the perpetrator(s) and the motive behind triggering the blast.

Today’s blast was the fourth time in recent times in which polling booths of the NPP candidate were targeted by the miscreants with bombs.

In another poll related violence, a group of people attacked another candidate of the NPP in Mayang Imphal constituency in Imphal West district on February 23 night. In the attack, windshields of at least four vehicles including that of the candidate were shattered. Bullet hit marks were also found in the vehicles, the reports further said. Reports also said that NPP candidate Urikhimbam Ramesh Singh and his workers escaped unhurt. The incident occurred at Laphupat Tera.

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While talking to reporters at his house on February 24, the NPP candidate recalled the incident and alleged that it was an attempt on his life. He alleged that at first the people who allegedly came out of a rival candidate’s house first pelted stones towards them while they were stopping in front of a shop, around 100 meters away from his rival candidate’s house. After that, several rounds of guns were fired towards them. The car he was travelling in was also hit by bullets, the NPP candidate alleged while showing the bullet hit car to the reporters. The attack with arms was clear evidence that it was an attempt on his life, Ramesh alleged.

Meanwhile, workers and supporters of the NPP candidate demanded that befitting action should be taken by the pertinent authorities against the perpetrators within 24 hours.

Manipur goes to poll to elect 60 members of the legislative assembly in two phases – on February 28 and March 5. The counting of votes will be held on March 10.

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