Journalists stage protest against threat in Imphal
Imphal, Dec. 27: Protesting against the threat on media, the journalists’ community in Manipur staged sit-in demonstration under the aegis of Editors’ Guild Manipur (EGM) at Keishampat junction here today.
According to reports, some unknown persons who claimed to be cadres of a banned armed group Kangleipak Communist Party (KCP-MC) telephoned the editor of Pandam, an evening daily and informed him that a hand grenade has been planted inside the newspaper office with a note from the banned KCP-MC that it was a New Year gift for all editors. The editor and other employees of the newspaper were not present in the office when the phone call came, it added.
Denouncing the act, EGM, following an emergency meeting, left the editorial space of all the Imphal-based newspapers of December 27 issue blank with the line “The editorial space is left blank to condemn the planting of a bomb at the office of evening daily news paper Pandam at Waheng Leikai.”
As the state media fraternity suspended their daily work for the day as most of the working journalists’ participated in the day’s six hours sit-in by ceasing their daily routine activities, there will be no publication of newspapers in Imphal on Wednesday. At the same time, one of the Cable TV networks also stopped telecasting their usual news programmes for the day. Showing solidarity with the media fraternity of the state, many politicians including the state unit presidents of the ruling Indian National Congress and opposition Bharatiya Janata Party besides the former MLAs of both the parties, DIPR Director and a number of press reporters and correspondents took part in the sit-in.
Oil pump started rationing fuel: Some of the oil pumps in Imphal started to ration petroleum products at their respective outlets on Tuesday. A number of long queues were seen since wee hours, reports said.
Around 500 goods trucks, including 138 oil tankers, arrived in the state capital from Jiribam side on Monday. However, there are no reports of distribution of LPG cylinders to its customers on Tuesday.
Reports from Jiribam, 220 km west of here, said around 700 goods trucks are still stranded at the newly created district headquarters located along the Manipur-Assam border and awaiting next round of security escorts for their movement.
Manipur is reeling under scarcity of essential items, particularly petroleum products, due to the indefinite economic blockade called by the United Naga Council on the two National Highway 2 and 37 in the state from November 1 midnight in protest against the move to make Sadar Hills and Jiribam full- fledged districts.