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BRIEF NEWS: March 09, 2011

In solidarity with Sharmila

LONDON, Mar 8: As part of its week-long centenary celebration of International Women’s Day, the School of Oriental and African Studies, London (SOAS) organized a public meeting at the student’s lounge in honor of Irom Chanu Sharmila who has been on a fast unto death agitation for more than 10 years now demanding repeal of Armed Forces Special Powers Act that give sweeping power to the Armed forces.

Jo Baker, a human right academician and activist and a keen follower of Sharmila’s struggle led the meeting and human right activist from Manipur and director of Human Rights Alert Babloo Loitongbam shared the genesis of Sharmila’s struggle.

Attended by British and International students, scholars and human rights activists, the meeting also had a strong Manipuri crows settled in and around London.

Leaflets highlighting the non-violent protest of Irom Chanu Sharmila were also distributed and Jo Baker took the initiative of taking many hand written personalized messages from the participating individuals for handing over to Sharmila in Manipur.

The meeting concluded with a request to sign up on the ongoing signature campaign for Sharmila to be considered for the Nobel Peace Prize.

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Spirit of Sharmila captured on canvas

IMPHAL, Mar 8: As part of the International Women’s Day observance, a Painting exhibition on the ‘Spirit of Sharmila’ was launched at the Art Gallery of Department of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi today.

The painting competition is being organized by Manipur Research Forum, Delhi (MRFD).

The exhibition was jointly inaugurated by Dean of School of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU Prof Parul Dave Mukherji, Dr Bishnupriya Dutt, Prof HS Shivpraka and Dr Oinam Bhagat of Department of Philosophy, JNU.

The fourteen paintings on canvas that were painted by NEOGENE, a group of young Manipuri artists on the occasion of Festival of Hope, Justice and Peace to commemorate the completion of one decade of hunger strike by Irom Chanu Sharmila over the demand for repealing Armed Forces Special Powers Act are being displayed in the exhibition which will continue till March 14.

All the 14 paintings have also been uploaded in www.e-pao.net and can be available at the weblink

http://www.e-pao.net/epGallery.asp?id=1&src=AFSPA_Related/Neogene201102

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Manipur rebel leader rules out negotiations with India

CALCUTTA, Mar 8: A prominent separatist leader in the north-eastern Indian state of Manipur has ruled out negotiations with Delhi.

Rajkumar Meghen, leader of the United National Liberation Front (UNLF), said he was “keen to continue” the armed movement to for Manipur’s independence.

Mr. Meghen was arrested in Bangladesh and handed to India to stand trial for sedition in November.

The UNLF is the oldest separatist group in the north-east and is estimated to have 5,000 armed fighters.

“I stick to my party’s line that we want Manipuris rather than Indians to decide out fate,” Mr. Meghen told the BBC by telephone.

“We have said we want a UN-supervised plebiscite in Manipur and I have no reason to change my stand on that,” he said.

The Indian army says it has regained control of a number of territories which were earlier under the control of the separatist group.

(Courtesy: Subir Bhaumik/BBC News)

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‘Manipur law and order improving’

IMPHAL, Mar 8: Taking into account insurgency-related activities in Manipur, Governor Gurbachan Jagat has said law and order situation was showing a sign of a turn-around. “I am pleased to report that the law and order situation in our state is showing signs of a turn-around,” the Governor said while addressing the assembly here on Tuesday. He said the number of civilians killed and injured has come down from 92 and 117 in 2007 to20 to 53 respectively in 2010. The number of police and security forces personnel killed has also declined from 41 to 5 in the corresponding period.

“On the other hand, the number of extremists arrested has risen from 1296 to 1397 and detentions under the NSA have risen from 145 to 230. In fact, we are seeing signs of improvement which go beyond statistical data,” Jagat said. There is an increasing realization among the general public about the activities of militant organizations. “This has raised willingness to resist. Wakat Meephams or sit-in protests are promptly organized against underground organizations that kidnap, kill or indulge in extortions,” he said.

(Courtesy: TNN)

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Obituary reference

IMPHAL, Mar 8: Manipur State Assembly today condoled the death of Maharaj Kumari Binodini Devi, who was a member of Manipur Electoral College in 1952 and Keisham Apabi, who was an elected member to the 5th Manipur Legislative Assembly in the by-election to Oinam AC and observed one minute silence as a mark of respect to the departed souls.

Making a special obituary reference in the House on the first day of its Budget session which began from today, leader of the House and Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh described the death of Maharaj Kumari Binodini as a great loss to the Manipuri society and said that she was one of the rare personalities, who inspite of being born in a Royal family went on to make significant contribution to the literary treasure trove of the State winning hearts of the reading public and literary critics alike.

On the other hand, Kei-sham Apabi, elected on Congress ticket, was the first woman Minister in the State.

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Three students killed in mishap

IMPHAL, Mar 8:  At least three students have been killed while four other individuals sustained injuries when a bus in which they were travelling met with an accident at Henbung along Imphal-Dimapur road at about 3.30 pm this afternoon.

According to a police source, the mini-bus carrying school students fell into a gorge following a mechanical failure resulting in the fatal casualties.

The corpses of the three students killed in the fatal mishap are being kept in Senapati District Hospital while the injured victims have been taken to hospitals at Imphal.  The de- ceased victims have been identified as YK Joel (14), DK Nguri and Suilita (12) of Ningthouphum village.

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Awareness on RTE

IMPHAL, Mar 8: No student can be subjected to any sort of harassment or punishment under the Right to Education Act, which has been implemented all over the country since last year, Assistant State Co-ordinator of RTE Biramangol has pointed out. Speaking as a resource person in an awareness program on ‘Community mobilization on Right to Education and responsibility of Village Education Committee (VEC)’ at the community hall of Saitu-Gamphajol today, Biramangol explained that Right to Education Act has implemented to ensure education for all.

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Income tax

IMPHAL, Mar 8: A meeting of Additional Commissioner of Income Tax, Range Imphal, Manipur with members of Manipur Tax Bar Association and the Assessing Officers was held at his office chamber today. In the meeting, the Additional Commissioner of Income Tax appealed to the members present for co-operation for timely deposit of advance tax, filing returns and widening tax base.

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Results out

IMPHAL, Mar 8: The results of the controversy marred DPC conducted for recruitment of teachers under School Education Department were declared last night.

According to an official source all the selected candidates would be appointed on contract basis for 11 months.

The number of teachers thus appointed on contract basis is 1051 Primary teachers, 69 Hindi primary teachers and 147 Hindi graduate teachers, the source disclosed, adding that the amount of monthly salary to be given during the contract period is Rs 7600 per month.

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Sarat sworn in

IMPHAL, Mar 8: Konthoujam Sarat, who has been elected to Manipur Legislative Assembly from Konthoujam Assembly Constituency in the recent by-election, was sworn in as a member of the House today.

Speaker I Hemochandra administered the oath of secrecy and office to the newly elected member during a solemn swearing in ceremony held in his office chamber at around 10 am today.

Leader of the House and Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh, Opposition leader Radhabinod Koijam, O Joy and other MLAs were also present at the occasion.

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Body disposal

IMPHAL, Mar 8: One unknown person (male) who looks like a non-Manipuri died at RIMS after medical treatment.

The corpse now lying in RIMS mortuary would be disposed off if no one claims it on or before March 10.

The deceased is about 5’3” in height and is thinly built. He had medium complexion and was wearing white shirt with blue floral prints and light blue jean pant. His ears were not pierced, said a press release issued by the OC of Imphal police station.

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Valedictory function

IMPHAL, Mar 8: A valedictory function of a Food and Fruit Processing training program was held yesterday at Shwayam Sidha Bhavan, Takyel with Power Grid Imphal Chief Manager SI Singh as chief guest.

The training program which went on for two weeks was organized by the North Eastern Industrial and Technical Consultancy Organization Limited (NEITCO), and sponsored by the Power Grid Corporation of India Limited under its Social Responsibility Scheme.

At the valedictory function, Chief Manager SI Singh distributed food and fruit processing machines to 25 training participants, conveyed a press release.

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Search Ops

IMPHAL, Mar 8: As a part of the stepped up security measures ahead of President Pratibha Patil’s visit to the State, Imphal East commandos led by Additional SP conducted a search operation at Sangakpham Keithel today.

Even as around 100 people were checked and frisked during the operation, there was no report of any arrest.

The commandos also searched the houses located around the Keithel.

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Traffic regulations

IMPHAL, Mar 8: In view of the visit of the President Pratibha Devisingh Patil on March 10, Dy SP (Traffic) Victoria Yengkhom has announced restrictions on the movement of vehicles at two specific routes.

According to a statement issued today, restrictions on the movement of vehicles would come into force from 1.20 pm of March 10 along the Airport to Raj Bhavan Road till arrival of the VVIP at Raj Bhavan.

Moreover, on March 11 the restriction will be enforced from 9.35 am till the VVIP arrives at IT Park, Mantripukhri and from 10.35 am between IT Park, Mantripukhri to Airport.

Students appearing in the ongoing CBSE examinations are informed to reach their respective exam centers in advance before the restrictions come into force.

***(BRIEF NEWS- Courtesy: The Sangai Express)

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