Six people were injured after police fired teargas shells and mock bombs on market vendors of a women market in Imphal, Manipur on Sunday, Indian Express reported. The women had blocked the road and demanded the withdrawal of the Citizenship Amendment Bill, in support to the “one road indefinite mass agitation” of the Manipur Peoples Against Citizenship Amendment Bill (MANPAC).
According to the report, few of the market vendors had announced a total shutdown of the marketplace till Tuesday and had blocked the road since Saturday morning, causing heavy traffic congestion. The women protestors had further spent the night on the road.
The shutdown call on behalf of the women had resulted in surrounding shops of the women market (Khwairamband Ima Keithel), including Imphal’s main market, Paona and Thangal bazaar to remain closed.
Following the road blockade, the police had asked the protesters to vacate the site by evening, to which the protesters refused and continued on with their agitation, the report stated. The police then resorted to firing teargas shells and using mock bombs to disperse them, which resulted in 6 sustaining injuries.
The injured have been shifted to the Regional Institute of Medical Science (RIMS).
According to the report, despite the police action, the protesters regrouped and resumed till late in the evening.
The MANPAC is an umbrella organisation that includes over 72 Manipur civil society organizations. The MANPAC was formed to agitate against the Citizenship Bill. Security measures have been increased in the state, while another umbrella organization, People’s Alliance Manipur has called for a 36-hour ‘cease work’ strike in protest against the Bill, from Monday morning, the report stated.
The bill has been criticised for being communal and being used by BJP to settle Hindus from neighbouring countries in the border regions at the cost of the natives.
The bill, seeks to grant citizenship to Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Christian, Parsi and Jain migrants from Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Pakistan if they have lived in India for six year