TODAY -

AR detains minister Francis, MLA Korungthang for no reason
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, February 09 2015: Rural Development and Panchayati Raj minister Francis Ngajokpa and MLA D Korungthang were detained without any understandable reason by Assam Rifles personnel for more than 15 minutes at Khudengthabi Check Post on Monday.

The incident brought afresh the sore memories of three years back when the then minister of agriculture Pheiroijam Parijat, a very senior minister, was detained and treated most disdainfully by an officer of Assam Rifles dressed in shorts and vest at a spot under Kumbi Assembly constituency.

The minister and Tengnoupal MLA had left Imphal in the morning for assessment of the implementation of works in the constituency taken up by State Rural Road Development Agency under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojna.

The team was accompanied by the chief engineer of the agency, N Bapuchand, and other officials.

The minister convoy which was travelling with the national flag flying and red beacon did not encounter any problem while crossing Pallel, Tegnoupal and other security check points.

At Khudengthabi, the escorts first tried to identify the team to the AR personnel who were on frisking duty to secure permission to move ahead.

Then, an officer identified as Major Rocky intervened and insisted full information about the persons accompanying the minister, the number of vehicles in the convoy, their registration plates and other trivial details.

Even on personal intervention of the escort commander, the paramilitary refused to budge.

At this time, MLA Korungthang stepped out from his vehicle and talked personally to the officer.

After getting an uncooperative response from the officer the MLA questioned the officer's reluctance to honour the Indian flag and act respectfully to a Cabinet minister of the state.

Temper flew and there were some exchange of words between the two, prompting the escorts to behave aggressively with the AR personnel.

Shortly afterwards, the minister's convoy was allowed to proceed.

Francis informed home minister Gaikhangam about the incident demanded action against the erring major and threatened to stay put at Moreh unless action is not taken up for removal of the officer from the post.

He reportedly lodged a complaint with DGP Sahid Ahmed over the phone.

When the team returned at the same post at 4 pm they were given an uninterrupted passage.

The Chandel SP and a huge squad of the state police were waiting at the gate in advance.

Talking to mediapersons at Moreh, minister Francis termed the officer behaviour as an utter show of disrespect for the national flag.


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