The police in Imphal have booked journalist Kishorchandra Wangkhem and political activist Erendro Leichombam under the National Security Act of 1980 over their Facebook posts allegedly deriding the death of State BJP president S. Tikendra Singh.


The duo was arrested on May 13 after the BJP leader succumbed to Covid-19. Referring to his death, both had commented that cow urine and dung were not cures for infection by the virus. Their arrest was based on a complaint filed by Manipur BJP general secretary P. Premananda Meetei and vice-president Usham Deban Singh.


An order issued by Imphal West District Magistrate Th. Kirankumar on Monday said Wangkhem “be detained under Section 3(2) of National Security Act, 1980, until further orders as and when he is released on bail”. The journalist and Leichombam were subsequently booked under NSA, Imphal West’s Superintendent of Police L. Meghachandra Singh said.


On Monday, the district’s Chief Judicial Magistrate granted bail to the duo on the execution of a personal recognisance bond of ?50,000 each with “a surety bond of a like amount” on condition that they will not repeat a “similar offence in the future” and be available for interrogation by the investigating officer as and when required.


Both Wangkhem, 41, and Leichombam, 40, had been arrested twice earlier on charges of sedition and for criticising the government. The latter is the founder of the People’s Resurgence and Justice Alliance, a political party whose candidate in the 2017 Manipur elections included rights activist Irom Sharmila.(The Hindu)


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