Imphal 15 april, 2011;
Phungyar Assembly constituency MLA Wungnaosang Keishing today escaped militants ambush at Rehang area under Lamlai Police station. Seven of his security escorts including his driver were killed in the ambush while six other personnel were injured. Wungnaosang sustain minor injury at his hand and was immediately made way towards Imphal in an Ambassador car. The ambush happened at around 2.30 pm on his way back to Imphal after attending an awareness campaign on HIV and AIDS at Hera village under Pungyar Assembly constituency. Report reaching here said heavily armed militants numbering around 30 came down heavily using automatic machine guns near Rehang area which is about 2 kilometer from Yainganpokpi towards Ukhrul side. The vehicle at which Wungnaosang Keishing was travelling falls into a gorge. The driver of the vehicles along with one security escort died on the spot however, Wungnaoshang Keishing made a narrow escaped from the militants’ strike. Six other security escort sustained injury during the attacked. All the injured were immediately rush to RIMS casualty and those in critical condition were evacuated at Shija Hospital. The militants reportedly leave the spot after attacking the MLA and his security escort. Luckily the media team distance themselves from the MLA’s vehicles as they went sometime ahead. Wungnaishang Keishing was on his way back to Imphal after attending an awareness campaign on HIV and AIDS organized by Manipur Legislature Forum on HIV and AIDS at Hera Village. The team of media went along with the MLA for media coverage of the HIV and AIDS awareness campaign. None of the underground group claimed the ambush at the time of filing this report.
Mentioned may be made that Wungnaoshang Keishing has recently supported the demand for establishment of a full-fledged Pungyar District which is presently under Ukhrul district. A memorandum on the regard was submitted to the Chief Minister at which the later gave them positive responses. The demand was however opposed by the Naga Apex Body UNC and called upon the district demand committee to withdraw the representation submitted to the government. The UNC in a press statement said that the demand for a new district is the handiwork of the adversaries to vitiate and derail the Alternative Arrangement process which is in progress peacefully and democratically.
The United Naga Council also said that the Naga people in the State of Manipur have severed all political ties with the Government of Manipur demanding the intervention of the Government of India for an Alternative Arrangement outside the Government of Manipur.
The UNC statement was strongly reacted by Wungnaoshang Keishing saying that the diktat of the UNC is anti development. It is worth mentioning here that UNC is a Naga organization which has been supporting the cause of the NSCN-IM which is currently undergoing peace talk with the government of India.
Those killed in today’s ambush at Rehang village has been identified as one Kunjo of 6th MR and one Sunil of 2nd MR. Others are yet to be identified. Those injured currently undergoing treatment at RIMS casualty were identified as MD Ali Rahman and Takhelambam Zilabanta of 1st MR and Sangthem Mangi of 6th MR. The other three injured evacuated at Shija Hospital has been identified as Stefen Keishing, Thokchom Sunindro and Voria Keishing of the Manipur Rifles battalions. Most of the injured are stated to be in critical condition and the number of death might increase.