The mobile internet data services, and internet/data services through VPN were suspended in the territorial jurisdiction of Manipur for five days with immediate effect till 7.45 pm of October 1, 2023, read an official notice released on Tuesday.
"In light of the distressing news that emerged yesterday regarding the tragic demise of the missing students, I want to assure the people of the State that both the state and central government are closely working together to nab the perpetrators," Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh posted on X.
Schools to remain closed
Authorities also announced that all schools will remain closed on September 27 and 29.
"All State Government/State Government Aided/Private Unaided Schools will be closed on 27th September and 29th September," the notification read.
Fresh round of violence
The police on Tuesday resorted to lathi-charge to control a mob protesting the killing of two youths who had been allegedly kidnapped and murdered in July. More than 30 students were injured in the police lathi charge. The students of Imphal-based schools and colleges brought out the protest rallies hours after photos of the bodies of the two youths went viral on social media, demanding arrest of those involved in the killing. The protesters clashed with the police near Sanjenthong in Imphal East district when security forces stopped them from advancing towards the chief minister’s secretariat here. The police used tear gas shells and batons to disperse the agitators.
“School and college students took out a rally in Imphal to protest against the killing of the two youths. As the students were heading towards the CM’s Secretariat, security personnel took action to disperse them," a police officer said. Over 30 students were injured in police action and admitted to three hospitals in Imphal, officials of the medical facilities said.
Photos surface on social media
Just a day earlier, photos of the bodies of the missing students surfaced on social media following which the Manipur government has asked people to exercise restraint and allow authorities to investigate the "kidnapping and killing" of the two. The two youths were identified as Phijam Hemjit (20) and Hijam Linthoingambi (17).
Students also took out rallies at Uripok, Old Lambulane, Singjamei in Imphal West district demanding arrest of those involved in the killing of the two youths. Similar clashes between students and security forces have been reported from Thoubal, Kakching and Bishnupur districts.
Manipur has been witnessing ethnic violence since early May. More than 175 people have been killed and several hundreds injured since ethnic clashes broke out in the northeastern state on May 3, when a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the majority Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe status. Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal valley, while tribals, including Nagas and Kukis, constitute 40 per cent and reside mostly in the hill districts.