Guwahati: Two influential Naga organisations of Manipur have dubbed as “staged-managed” Monday’s firing incident at Ukhrul helipad even as the Congress government in the state is convinced that the attack was carried out by the Isak-Muivah faction of major Naga insurgent group National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM).
A Manipur Rifles jawan was injured in the firing which took place moments after Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh’s chopper had taken off from the helipad. He had gone to Ukhrul to inaugurate a hospital and two power sub-stations but flew back to Manipur capital Imphal in the face of violent protests by the Nagas.
The United Naga Council (UNC) and the Tangkhul Naga Long (TNL) alleged that the incident was stage-managed by Ibobi. “It won’t be possible for any element to target someone or plant bombs at a place teeming with security personnel in view of the chief minister’s visit,” the TNL said. It enforced a bandh in Ukhrul on Monday in protest against Ibobi’s visit and called people to boycott him.
The organisation said its action was aimed at preventing the “anti-tribal” chief minister from visiting Ukhrul. It alleged Ibobi had come to create trouble in the hill district where the Nagas are in a large majority. Meanwhile, claiming that it was the NSCN-IM which opened fire, the Manipur government has urged the Centre to take action against the insurgent group, which has been in peace mode since 1997 following its signing of a ceasefire agreement with the Centre.
Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam exuded confidence that the Centre would take strong note of the violation of ceasefire ground rules by the NSCN-IM. He dismissed the charge of the Naga organisations that the incident was stage-managed by categorically saying the government would not ask any to fire at its own police personnel.