As Meira Paibi, a collective of Meitei women, on Monday staged protests against the brutality of Assam Rifles in the Imphal Valley, Manipur government finally approved withdrawal of the troops from the vital checkpoint at Moirang Lamkhai in Bishnupur.
According to the order passed by the Manipur DGP, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and state police will now replace the 9 Assam Rifles with immediate effect at the crucial checkpoint at Bishnupur-Kangvai road.
The protest against the brutality of Assam Rifles erupted following the emergence of a video which purportedly showed an altercation between the police personnel and the paramilitary force regarding their style of operation.
Protest by the Meira Paibi activists
Demanding removal of Assam Rifles from violence-hit areas and accusing the paramilitary force of "brutality during recent agitations", the Meira Paibi activists staged sit-in demonstrations in various localities blocking roads.
Meira Paibi, which literally means 'women torch bearers', took the decision to conduct the stir during a convention held in Malom Tulihal area in Imphal West district on Sunday.
In Hodam Leirak area in the violence-hit Imphal West district, dozens of women came out on the streets and blocked one lane of the Tiddim Road which leads to Bishnupur and Churachandpur districts ehile similar pictures of sit-in demonstrations were also seen in Kwakeithel, Uripok and Singjamei areas in Imphal West district and Angom Leikai and Khurai areas in Imphal East district.
L Mema, a protester at Hodam Leirak, told reporters, "Our protest was necessitated by the continuous brutal crackdown by the Assam Rifles on the public, including women. Evidence has come to light that Assam Rifles is biased and is targeting the Meiteis instead of discharging their duties responsibly and sincerely."