Manipur News: ‘Did they harm anyone?’ Parents of two Meitei students killed in violence-hit state

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The disappearance of two Manipur students, Hijam Linthoingambi, 17, and Phijam Hemjit, 20, who went missing in July 2023, has sent shockwaves through the community. Recent photographs of the students surfaced on social media, revealing their whereabouts in what seems to be a makeshift jungle camp. In an emotional interview with NDTV, the parents of Hemjit expressed their anguish, promising to stop serving food at his table.

The perplexing case began on July 6, when Linthoingambi left home to attend NEET classes for pre-medical studies. Accompanied by her friend Hemjit, they embarked on a motorcycle journey along the Churachandpur and Bishnupur districts route, taking advantage of a temporary curfew relaxation.

According to Hijam Kullajit, Linthoingambi’s father, their phones were last tracked to Kwakta and Lamdan. “Her phone was last switched off at Kwakta, and her friend’s phone was switched off at Lamdan,” he told NDTV. Linthoingambi’s mother, Jayashree, added, “She seemed frightened and told me that she was in Nambol. I asked her why she was at Nambol, and she told me her exact location so that we could pick her up. It was Khoupum, and her phone got switched off.”

Desperate for answers, Linthoingambi’s father, alongside Hemjit’s family, are demanding justice for their children. Phijam Ibungobi, Hemjit’s father, questioned, “Has my son or the girl done anything wrong? Did they harm anyone?”

The Manipur state government has pledged “swift and decisive” action against those responsible for the abduction and tragic loss of these two students. Authorities have called for public restraint, urging citizens to allow professionals to conduct the investigation. The police are collaborating with central security agencies to uncover the full details of the incident.

The state of Manipur has been embroiled in widespread violence since May, following a high court directive that recommended considering the non-tribal Meitei community for inclusion in the list of Scheduled Tribes (ST), sparking ethnic clashes. The unrest has resulted in over 170 fatalities and numerous injuries.

As the investigation unfolds, the community remains united in their quest for justice, awaiting answers to the mysterious disappearance of these two young students.

News Summary:

  • The disappearance of Manipur students Hijam Linthoingambi and Phijam Hemjit has shocked the community, with recent photos suggesting they were in a makeshift jungle camp.
  • Linthoingambi and Hemjit vanished in July after leaving for NEET classes, with their phones last traced to different locations.
  • The families of the missing students are demanding justice, and the Manipur state government has promised swift action.
  • Manipur has witnessed widespread violence since May, following ethnic clashes prompted by a high court directive, resulting in over 170 casualties.
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