Manipur Police personnel drove 2 Kuki women to mob that paraded them naked: CBI charge sheet

New Delhi, Apr 30 (PTI) The Manipur Police personnel allegedly drove the two women from the Kuki-Zomi community, who had sought refuge in their official gypsy, to a mob of around 1,000 Meiti rioters in Kangpokpi district, the CBI charge sheet has said.

The two women were subsequently stripped naked and paraded before being brutally gang-raped during the ethnic violence in the state, the charge sheet added.

The charge sheet said the mob had attacked a third woman, belonging to the same family, too, and tried to strip her but failed in the attempt because she was clutching her granddaughter tightly. She managed to escape after the group attacking her went towards the first two victims who were being tormented in the paddy fields.

All three victims had sought the help of police personnel present on the spot, but no help was extended to them, the charge sheet has alleged.

The women, one of whom was the wife of a Kargil war veteran, desperately asked the police personnel to drive them to a safe location but were allegedly told by them that “there was no key” (of the vehicle) and did not provide any help, the charge sheet said.

A video showing two women being paraded naked surrounded by a mob of men went viral last year in July, nearly two months after the incident that took place on May 4.

The CBI filed its charge sheet against six accused and a report against one Child in Conflict with the Law (CCL) before the Special Judge, CBI Court at Guwahati on October 16 last year.

It has been alleged that the two women were running away from a mob of around 900-1,000 persons carrying sophisticated weapons like AK rifles, SLR, INSAS and .303 rifles. The mob vandalised and “burnt to the ground” all the houses of their village B Phainom in Kangpokpi district, about 68 km south of Saikul police station, it said.

All three women were part of the group of 10 people who ran into the Haokhongching forest to hide from the mob. The women, along with other victims, ran into the forest to escape from the mob but were spotted by the rioters who had separated the victims.

One group took two males and two females, another took the third victim with a granddaughter while the third group took the village chief, another male and his two daughters.

One of the two victims who was gang-raped and paraded naked was not well and had to be carried on the backs of male members of the family as they proceeded to the Chakhama village.

The mob swelled up on the way as the rioters from another village joined the group and all started beating the victims.

Some members of the mob told the women to reach the police vehicle parked on the roadside to seek help, the officials in the know of the development said.

The two women managed to get inside the vehicle, in which two police personnel and the driver were sitting. Three to four personnel were outside the vehicle.

One of the male victims, who also managed to make his way inside the vehicle, kept pleading with the driver to drive them to a safe place but was told that “there was no key”.

The husband of one of the victims had served the Indian Army as a subedar of the Assam Regiment.

The police also did not help the father of the man sitting in the vehicle from being assaulted by the mob, the CBI has alleged.

The driver of the police gypsy drove the vehicle towards a mob of around 1,000 people and stopped it in front of them. The victims desperately asked the police personnel to drive them to safety, but no help was provided to them.

The mob had already killed the father of one of the male victims who was sitting in the gypsy along with the two women, the agency has said. Later, the male victim in the gypsy was also bludgeoned to death.

Their bodies were thrown in the dry riverbed near the village. The violent mob came towards the gypsy when the police personnel fled from the scene, leaving the victims at the mercy of the crowd.

The perverted assault and gang rape of the two women victims started after the rioters dragged them out, stripped them of their clothes and paraded them naked, according to the gory details detailed in three pages of the charge sheet.

While the two women were facing inhuman sexual assault, a group of the rioters were dragging the third victim towards the main road where a police vehicle was parked. She pleaded with the police personnel to save her husband, but they did not listen. When she tried to enter the police vehicle, they “pushed her away”, the charge sheet said.

She got lucky when a group of rioters tormenting her turned their attention to another group which was assaulting two female victims and was involved in the macabre killing of two male victims.

The woman ran along with her granddaughter, who was “crying inconsolably” towards another village, only to be reunited with her family the next day in a Naga village, it said.

The CBI has charge sheeted Huirem Herodas Meitei, Arun Kungongbam, Ningombam Tomba Singh, Yumlemban Jiban Singh, Pukrihongbam Surunjoy Meiti and Nameirakpam Kiran Meiti and a report has been filed against a juvenile.

“Investigation has established that the accused individuals, part of ethnic clashes between the Meiteis and Kukis, conspired with a large group of unidentified miscreants from the Meitei community to execute a series of preplanned criminal acts, including violence, arson, sexual assault, and murder with a clear intent.

“Their deliberate actions which specifically targeted victims from the tribal community, included threats, violence and various unlawful acts, aimed at promoting enmity between different groups,” the charge sheet said.

The accused have been charged under various sections of the Indian Penal Code, including those pertaining to gang rape, murder, outraging the modesty of a woman and criminal conspiracy, the CBI has said.

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