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Manipur: Journalist, Activist Arrested for Facebook Posts

The Manipur police, on Thursday evening, arrested Kishorechandra Wangkhem and activist Erendro Leichombam from their homes, after it received a complaint from the BJP general secretary P. Premananda Meetei and BJP vice-president Usham Deban. The complaint alleged that Wanghkem and Leichombam’s Facebook posts insulted Manipur BJP president Saikhom Tikendra Singh, who succumbed to COVID-19 on Thursday.

“An FIR was lodged against them under section 153-A (promoting enmity between groups)/505(b)(2) (making statement with an intent to incite and cause mischief) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the duo will remain in police custody till May 17,”

Following the BJP president’s death, Wangkhem wrote on his Facebook page, “Santhi Sanyung na yadrabo, oh!!! RIP #Rashikang_Kangyet Hayeng nga chaani.” (Rough translation: Cow dung cow urine didn’t work. Groundless argument. Tomorrow I will eat fish.)

This is the third time Wangkhem has been arrested. He earlier spent time in prison in two different cases. Even before, the BJP-led government in Manipur had pressed charges of sedition under the National Security Act (NSA) and for “promoting enmity between different groups through a social media post”.

Leichombam, convener of Manipur-based political party People’s Resurgence and Justice Alliance (PRJA), was also booked by Manipur police earlier on charges of sedition over a Facebook comment last year. He was also arrested in 2018 after he posted a critical comment and video against the BJP-led government in the state.


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