Spt defends AR over Lairou arson
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, July 19: Out-rightly rejecting the suspicion voiced by Chief Minister O Ibobi against Assam Rifles personnel and officials stationed at Lairou Ching in connection with the torching of two goods laden trucks near the security post on July 15, various organisations today said that the CM should refrain from making such irresponsible remarks.

Detailing the circumstances leading to the destruction of the vehicles, Senapati District Students� Association stated that the vehicles mingled with the army convoy and tried to violate the economic blockade.

However, Ansam agitation supporters intercepted the vehicles and set them on fire.

Reacting to the Chief Minister's assertion in the Assembly that army authorities were intimated to inquire whether negligence of an officer and personnel of the Assam Rifles had led to torching of the two trucks in between Maram and Lairou Ching AR post, Naga Students� Union, Chandel described the CM�s comment as sinister and unfounded.

President of the student organisation taking serious note of the CM�s remarks, contended that casting doubt on involvement of army personnel to the Ansam agitation is inflammatory and reflects irresponsible conduct.

Insisting that army establishments and its personnel are making enormous contribution to usher in peace in the region particularly in Manipur, the president cautioned the CM against doubting the credibility of the Army and termed Ibobi�s contention as immature as well as unfortunate.

He also claimed that volunteers are stationed at strategic locations on the Imphal-Moreh route to enforce the Ansam sponsored economic blockade.

Meanwhile, Lairou ching Village authority has also condemned the Chief Minister�s version on the July 15 truck burning incidents near Lairou AR post.

In a statement issued to the press today, the village authority contended that the goods carrier tried to hoodwink blockade supporters by mixing up with the security convoy until it was separated at Lairou junction as the Assam Rifles convoy proceeded to its camp.

Insisting that some AR personnel had even advised the truck operator to stay put near the security post to avoid any untoward incident, the statement jointly signed by chairman of the village authority Railu, village authority�s L Kajung, Church clerk Khamba and president of Lairou Ching Students� union L Phuba informed that the truck driver declined advice against proceeding further from Lairou Ching which ultimately resulted in suspected blockade supporters descending on the isolated vehicle and setting it on fire.