43 Assam Rifles posted at Motbung, Manipur have been accused of creating a fear psychosis among civilians in Awang Sekmai area in the name of counter insurgency operations.
One Khwairakpam Ramesh alias Naocha (40) s/o late Manijao of Sekmai Makha Leikai was pulled up by a group of unidentified armed men wearing civilian dresses at about 7 pm of June 5 .
Ramesh said that he going back home after closing his drug store at Sekmai Bazar when he was gripped by the neck from behind.
As he was struggling with the unidentified man, 3/4 other persons came rushing and he was forcibly thrown into a Maruti van having tinted glass and registration number of Assam.
The assailants were six in number and they were armed with automatic rifles.
As they were unaware, the abductors turned around the van from his own courtyard.
Taking advantage of the location, Ramesh shouted for help but his voice was too small on account of the strong grip on his neck.
The neighbouring people thought that a woman had been adducted and they came running after the van.
Yet, the abductors managed to take away Ramesh after threatening the civilians with their weapons.
Inside the van, Ramesh was blindfolded and he was subjected to a volley of irrelevant questions.
In the meantime, Ramesh’s family filed a complaint at Sekmai police station.
Later the same night, 43 Assam Rifles disclosed that Ramesh had been taken into their custody.
Instead of handing him over to Sekmai police station, Ramesh was handed over to Imphal police station the same night with the unfounded allegation of being a KCP (Maoist) cadre, narrated the victim.
The very act of pulling up a civilian by the AR team who were not in their uniforms without informing the local police and without issuing arrest memo is a blatant act of intimidation and abduction, asserted Ramesh’s family.
Even if it was case of misinformation by their informer, the Assam Rifles should have first made a thorough verification.
Ramesh could be located only after an intensive search together with local MLA Kh Devendra who happens to be a relative otherwise nobody knows what could have happened to the innocent man, they said.