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E-Pao! Feature - The surrendering fiasco at IG-AR(S) Hq

The surrendering fiasco at IG-AR(S) Hq

By: Donn Morgan Kipgen *



Some recent incidents have shown the true lights of the outrageous incompetency and socio-political tragedy of the Manipur State Govt and its law enforcement agencies. They have also clearly shown the rapid degeneration of our very own society.

The darker sides of insurgency movements in Manipur are much better left uncriticised since media persons have neither firearms nor armed escort party like high-flying corrupted political leaders and street-smart police officers and bureaucrats. An abortive life attempt upon a senior journalist is a grim reminders that it is much the wiser to cover reports of insurgency movements victims rather than being the victim itself.

The first most disturbing issues were that of the alleged multiple-raping of young Hmar girls by suspected non-tribal UGs in Churachandpur district. The second issue is that of the alleged 'staged-surrenderings' of four youths at the IG-AR(s) HQ, Mantripukhri, at the hands of Lt. Gen ZU Shah, 3rd Corps on the 13th day of March, 2006, along with firearms and dressed in non-standard pattern NSP military uniforms.

Both the NSP firearms and UG uniforms are not available in market stores. Since the alleged surrenderees had paid their way through in unlawful backdoor enlistment method at the behest of a self-styled Army/Ar recruiter by misguiding local authorities, the Army/AR, for once, cannot be held accountable or be blamed exclusively.

As a matter of fact, it is full responsibility of the local or state law enforcement agencies to confirm the claim and officially verify all the antecedents of UG militants as genuine cases before any surrender ceremony conducted by the Army/AR. Moreover, senior police officers concerned, the Army/AR cannot conduct such ceremony all alone as they please since there are strict military guidelines.

On top of the that the Army/AR are very meticulous, methodical and very guarded when it comes to such grand surrender-ceremony. That's why a general staff officer in the form of Lt. Gen ZU Shah, GOC 3rd Corps, took a time to grace the ceremony since it was believed by the Army/AR that all the surrenderees were genuine UG militants, a small job which ought to be conducted by a Brigadier or DGP.

This fiasco is a real fiasco for the State police screening committee, and a fall-out of the State Govt misadventure besettled with questionable or unequal justice system. The undeniable causes of this pathetic State Govt sponsored UG surrenderee rehabilitation programme are the staggering unemployment situation, lure of fast-tract job prospects and the naked corrupted activities of the State Govt officials laced with unlawful political activities.

Some would do anything to buy regular jobs, some would go for any money-making business regardless of the legality of it and some would just perished while seek it lawfully in eternity.

The 13th March 2006 surrendering controversy needs to be examined impartially from a legal point of view since an unlawful activity had been evidently committed by some of the surrenderess at IG AR (s) HQ. Firstly, the main culprit was the absconding self-appointed recruiter since he is not even an armed forces personnel or agent.

As we all know, no bribery nor any corrupted activities are allowed in the Army/AR regular recruitment process unlike the State law enforcement recruitment system. Recruitment is based on physical, mental, medical and educational fitness: it's about all best men in, the lesser out. If the alleged four 'forced-surrenderees' considered themselves fit enough to become a regular armed forces personnel, why on earth did they try to 'enlist' unconditionally via back-door process by 'paying' a self-styled Army/AR recruiter who has no proper authority.

Without a certain price, this treacherous charlatan would not have not employed officially by the Army/AR authorities. Why did not the four job seekers take part in regular recruitment process? How on earth could they easily get themselves inside an Army/AR camps for a regular job by using unofficial channel if they are not an armed UG surrenderees?

Moreover, they were officially proclaimed as surrendered UG militants by the Thoubal district police HQ, without which they just cannot be kept under military protective custody with the mandatory fictitious name to protect their identities and their family members. Many immediate family members have been 'punished' by the UG outfits they had treacherously deserted.

This is an equivalent of witness protection system used all over the civilised world. Not two surrenderees sheltered at the police commandos HQ were shot dead by unidentified men as they strolled out at North AOC, whereas two disgruntled surrenderees were shot dead by the police commandos themselves as the two tried to run away with weapons.

The fact of another two ex-militants police commandos who were caught at MG Avenue by the Commandos as they tried to flee with service firearms some years back is not known: both of them were used as football and kickbag under the street light.

Some months back, beguiled surrendered militants under the protection of the police commandos staged a dharna in front of the CM office for not being inducted as CDOs/IRB jawans as officially promised despite the lapse of nearly a year's period. They were lathi-charged and butted back to CDO HQ. Till now those UG surrenderees and newer one's family members filed a case as required for branch official promises and unlawful confinement.

Coming back to 'staged surrender' fiasco at IG-AR(S) Hq, one must have to keep in mind the origin of it all. In this case, three State's citizens have been working illegally to earn money unpatriotically by treacherously misguiding an unguided youths and blissfully ignorant family members with the help of some local police officers who secretly verified them as known or active UG militants.

God only knows how many such unlawful recruitment have been arranged in the past. Those three self-proclaimed recruiters are the real culprits who sold out the sons of Manipur with the help of some corrupted police officers who should be held accountable for the fake surrender. Without the assistance of those charlatan recruiters and proper official verifications, no armed forces units would or could accept any armed UG militant who come to surrender.

Of course, the AR/Army in CI OPs campaign will do anything or everything to lure in genuine UG militants, better known as 'misguided youths' to work under their wings at all cost. After all, UG surrenderees have lots of informations and local knowledge. In fact, the surrender programme is regularly held in accordance with the guidelines laid down by the State administration.

In this 13th March 2006, surrender fiasco, it is the fake surrenderees, the self-styled recruiters and local police authorities who broke the law by resorting to unofficial back-door black recruitment. By their own admissions and IOs report, the misguided youths bought firearms as 'instruments' of surrender, thereby misguiding the armed forces authorities.

This incident reflects our society's 'by hook or by crook' money-making mentality. With the daily doses of extortions, killings, kidnappings and nasty allegations, we all are being seemingly absorbed into the evergrowing volatile gun-culture and seems to enjoy the darker side of things. Our sense of responsibility, in retrospect, is on lower side, we need to stand up proud.

If the State Govt and NOGs have done their responsible bits, allegations of fake-surrenderings, mass rapings, lootings, and killings would not have happened time after time. Lack of job avenues and profitable business have taken a great toll in our present society.

If things go as they do know, May God Almighty help us all.


* Donn Morgan Kipgen wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on April 29th, 2006


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