'Hounded by police': Father of Manipur girl whose body was found hanging at school hostel

N Tomchou said he had kept changing his hideouts as he was afraid the police would make him sign papers and then tell protestors that the case had been amicably settled.

Published: 03rd September 2019 04:28 PM  |   Last Updated: 03rd September 2019 04:31 PM   |  A+A-

crime scene, police probe

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Express News Service

GUWAHATI: The father of a Manipur girl, whose body was found hanging at her school hostel, has gone into hiding as he was allegedly being hounded by the police. 

N Tomchou, the father of 12-year-old Ningthoujam Babysana Chanu, said he had kept changing his hideouts as he was afraid the police would make him sign papers and then tell protestors that the case had been amicably settled.

Manipur capital Imphal has been on the edge for the past several weeks following protests over the Class VII girl’s death. Her body was found hanging at the hostel of her Standard Robarth Higher Secondary School, located at Canchipur in Manipur capital Imphal, on July 18.

The Imphal Valley witnessed a shutdown on Monday as well as on Tuesday as a Joint Action Committee of protestors, formed after the girl’s death, called a 48-hour bandh. 

“The police are insisting that I give a statement. But I have already given it, not once but twice. Basically, their idea is to put me in detention,” Tomchou alleged.

“The policemen come to my house in three-four vehicles every day looking for me. The situation forced all of us in the family and that of my younger brother to go into hiding. The children haven’t been able to go to their school. If I go back home, I fear they will come and pick me up,” he told this newspaper from an undisclosed location. 

“The police are telling people on the social media that the matter has been resolved and that only my signature is needed. If they find me, I am sure they will force me to sign the papers,” Tomchou said.

The police rubbished his charges.

“We went to his house only once. But as he mobilized people, it was not possible for us to record his statement. We interacted with him once after the incident and he got the sense his statement has been recorded,” Imphal West Superintendent of Police, K Meghachandra, said. 

The report of post-mortem suspected suicide but Tomchou said he was 100 per cent sure that his daughter was murdered by “school people”.

“I dropped her at her school hostel on July 14 following vacation. In the morning of July 18, I was informed by school authorities she committed suicide. I rushed there but I was not allowed to go near her. The scribes too were prevented,” the father alleged. 

He criticised the state government for not handing the case over to the CBI despite an assurance. However, Chief Minister N Biren Singh said the case had been already handed over to the CBI.

“The present issue is politically-motivated. The case has been already handed over (to the CBI). The documents were received by the DOPT staff on 31/7/19 through an ASO,” he told this newspaper.

Earlier, the police arrested the school’s founder-cum-principal P Landhoni and four others including two hostel wardens. Fourteen protestors were also held with one of them being granted bail. An SIT of the police is probing the case.

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