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Widespread pre-poll violence increasing in Manipur

IANS | Imphal |

In a series of pre-poll violent incidents in Manipur, a bomb exploded in Imphal, while separately police personnel were attacked by villagers and two jeeps vandalised, police said on Monday.

The incidents occurred on Sunday night in the Khundrakpam constituency.

"An intelligence input was received saying Khogen, a police Sub-Inspector, has live bullets in his house. During the inquiry, an unruly mob attacked the police party," an official said.

"Police had to resort to tear gas and firing of rubber bullets to disperse the mob," the police official added.

Some persons, including a seven-month old baby, were injured in the police action.

The Congress committee of the Khundrakpam constituency in a statement said the party had no hand in the incident.

Villagers said there was a political motive behind the attempt to arrest Khogen, adding that nothing incriminating was found. Besides, the police commandos, who failed to produce warrant of arrest, also allegedly refused to issue an arrest memo, the villagers said.

Meanwhile, some youths, who identified themselves as members of an insurgents outfit, had left a bullet with John Maibam, a worker of the North East India Development Party in the Wangkhem constituency.

The youths also reportedly told him that if he ignored the warning to not work for the party, he will face dire consequences. There were increasing reports of pre-poll clashes from other constituencies as well.

On the other hand, some candidates from remote hill areas cannot go to their respective constituencies and were carrying on the election campaign through some hardcore supporters. Most of them have escaped assassination attempts in the past.