Scribe on duty killed in police firing
Source: Hueiyen News Service
Imphal, December 23 2012:
A journalist, who was covering the indefinite bandh called by Film Forum Manipur and Manipur State Shumang Leela Council to press the demand for arresting Livingstone, NSCN-IM cadre who molested and assaulted film actress Momoco, was killed in police firing on bandh supporters today.
The incident took place at around 1 pm at Thangmeiband Sinam Leikai near the foothills of Cheiraoching.
Thangjam Dwijamani alias Nanao alias Lagao, s/o late Th Babu of Thangmeiband Sinam Leikai was covering news when he was hit by a fatal bullet right through his right side chest.
He was immediately rushed to RIMS for treatment in a van brought by a team of reporters from Doordarshan Kendra Imphal but he succumbed to the injuries.
Dwijamani was the youngest among five siblings and was working as a stringer of Doordarshan Kendra, Imphal.
Earlier, he used to be associated with Prime News, a news channel based in Guwahati.
He is survived by his wife and two children, one a 2-year old son and the other a 1-year old daughter.
The bullet which hit his right chest pierced through.
His hands also bore marks of being hit by a rubber bullet.
The body has been moved to the mortuary for post mortem.
As the news of death of Dwijamani spread, a large number of journalists working in different media houses of state and correspondents of outside firms as well as President of All Manipur Working Journalists' Union (AMWJU) descended at RIMS.
Just as the shocked journalists and bereaved family members were trying to come in term with the loss, a bullet proof vehicle (Rakshak) of Manipur Police Commandos drove in full speed inside the hospital complex and almost ran over the agitated people gathered there.
Furious over the conduct of the police commandos, the agitated people started pelting stones at the bullet proof vehicle.
In retaliation, security personnel began firing from inside the bullet proof vehicle.
At that point of time, the bereaved family members of Dwijamani including his wife and mother laid down on the ground and asked the police personnel to shoot and kill them.
It was only when DSP Ibomcha, who was present at the hospital all the while much before the arrival of the bullet proof vehicle, scolded the police commandos that the vehicle left RIMS campus immediately.
Chief Minister O Ibobi, who had just returned back from Delhi today, also came to RIMS on hearing about the death of the journalist in police firing and shared in the grief of the bereaved family.
Prior to the arrival of Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh, Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam had already been at RIMS to express his condolence over the death of Dwijamani.
Social Welfare Minister AK Mirabai; Commerce & Industries Minister Govindas Konthoujam; MLAs K Ranjit, N Biren, Th Bishwarjit, Kh Joykishan, Dr I Ibohalbi; ex-MLAs O Joy, Bijoy Koijam and President of BJP, State Unit Th Chaoba also came to RIMS to condole the demise of the journalist.
While talking to the waiting mediapersons and the family members, Chief Minister O Ibobi said that he had been to Delhi to meet the Union Home Minister.
"In the meeting with the Union Home Minister, I told him that Manipur is burning and it can be only doused off after the Union Government arrest Livingstone and hand him over to the State government", Ibobi said.
He further informed that he had asked the Union Home Minister to press the interlocutor to arrest Livingstone and hand over to the Manipur state and made it clear that this is not the time to ponder over Naga issue.
While expressing sorrow over the dead of the journalist, the Chief Minister condemned the shooting of the journalist and assured that those involved would not be spared.
Later in the evening, a special General Body Meeting of All Manipur Working Journalists' Union was convened at Manipur Press Club.
During the meeting, video footage which Dwijamani had recorded on his camera was studied minutely.
From the Press Club, the aggrieved journalists marched upto the Chief Minister's Bungalow to meet CM O Ibobi and other Ministers.