Updated: November 18, 2021 10:36:56 pm
Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh on Thursday said the state government is planning to hand over the probe of Churachandpur ambush to the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
While an FIR has been lodged, the state government will write a letter to the agency for further investigation, the CM said.
As many as seven including the commandant of 46 Assam Rifles (AR) Colonel Viplav Tripathi, his wife, son and four jawans were killed when the convoy carrying the officer was attacked by militants at Behiang in Churachandpur district of Manipur last Saturday. Six jawans sustained injuries in the attack.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Manipur and Manipur Naga People’s Front (MNPF) have claimed responsibility for the attack. Many including the Prime Minister, Defence Minister, Manipur CM among others condemned the attack as a “cowardly” act. The militant groups came under intense criticism for targeting women and children.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) Manipur, one of the two groups responsible for the attack on the convoy of 46 Assam Rifles, on Thursday reiterated that it was not aware of the presence of civilians in the convoy.
The outfit in a statement said that in a battle, there would be collateral damages. Though as a principle of a Revolutionary fighter, PLA has always tred to avoid harming innocent people especially women and children, it said. It called the deaths of the colonel’s wife and child ‘sad and unfortunate’.
“We had no prior knowledge of their presence in that convoy. If we knew, there might be a different scenario,” the outfit said and expressed discontentment over “Indian leaders and media heroes” trying to label PLA as a terrorist and monster.
Instead of labelling PLA as a terrorist or extremist outfit, it is better to study how and why a Commanding Officer of a unit protected by India’s one of the finest Commando Ghatak Force was killed at a mere PLA ambush, it asked.
The PLA claimed that it was a new organisation formed by a few former members of RGM (Revolutionary Government of Manipur) and new recruits and not a break-away group as highlighted in the media.
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