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Railway Vehicle torched again in Marangjing Village, Noney District

From Our Correspondent
NONEY: In deepening crisis with the impacts of the ongoing Railway works by the Northern Railways at Marangjing Village in Noney District, Manipur amid the continued ban on railway works by villagers of the village, another vehicle belonging to the Shusee Company was burnt down on 27th December 2017 for defying the ban on railway works. The arsoning of the Dumper Truck  happened around 5PM near tunnel no 4 of the ongoing railway works despite the tight security arrangement of Manipur State Police and the para military forces in and around the railway works installations in Marangjing Village.

Earliera on 23rd December, a vehicle belonging to the Coastal Company was completely burnt down for defying the ban on railway works by the villagers on 23rd December around 8 PM. The arsoning of vehicle happened in Marangching village jurisdiction in Noney District near Kharam Village near the Ejei River.

The ban on railway works is was imposed by the villagers of Marangching village since 20th December 2017 protesting the arbitrary compensation and rehabilitation works of the Railway authorities. The villagers earlier submitted a  petition to the Chief Minister on 10th December 2017 urging the Government of Manipur to constitute a committee comprising senior officer not below the rank of Chief Secretary / Addl. Chief Secretary to recover the compensation amount illegally siphoned by Mr. Thaunkulung Gangmei and Kh. Lovejoy, who had claimed individual ownership over the major portion of lands, which are actually village land of Makhuam / Marangching, acquired for construction of NF Railway Broad Gauge (BG) and the illegal withdrawal of the compensation amount due to illegal acts of the Deputy Commissioner, Mr. Armstrong Pamei based on nullified copy of the Court orders and fabricated documents.   

The villagers appealed the Railway authorities to stop the railway works till the matter is amicably resolved in accordance with the demands of villagers. The Government of Manipur should take responsibility to recover the compensation amount made to two individuals namely Thuankulung Gangmei and Kh. Lovejoy by setting up a committee consisting of a senior officer not below the rank of Chief Secretary / Addl. Chief Secretary.  The Government should take necessary legal action against Mr. Armstrong Pamei, District Collector, Tamenglong District and his subordinate officials involved for causing the siphoning and the loss of public exchequer more than 36 Crores.

Background of the ban on railway works: On 21st March 2017, an award order was issued by the DC Tamenglong stating that the ownership of the land is under dispute and any compensation payment be made based on the court decision. On 9 June 2017, the Hon’ble Court of Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation, Resettlement Authority, Tamenglong District fix 30th June 2017 as the date of hearing to appear the DC of Tamenglong based on the summon letter dated 13th June 2017. On 15th and 16th June 2017, the DC modified the compensatory award two times in favor of two individuals Mr. Thaunkulung Gangmei and Kh. Lovejoy. The Civil Court of Tamenglong dismissed the case on 16thJune 2017 on non-application of jurisdiction. On the same day, The DC, Tamenglong District made cheque payment to the two individuals. On 23rd June 2017, the villagers of Makhuam rejecting the DC’s compensatory award to the two individuals submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister of Manipur to halt the payment.

On 5 July, the villagers met with the DC, Tamenglong and resolved to freeze the account of the two individuals. On 28th August 2017, the DC informed the villagers through SDO and SDC of Tamenglong District that compensation money had already been withdrawn by Mr. Thaunkulung Gangmei. 

The petition by Makhuam (Marangjing) Villagers expressed concern with the arbitrary payment of compensation for land affected by railway works by the Deputy Commission of Tamenglong District, Manipur on 16 July 2017 to two individuals of Makhuam and Pungmon villages, despite objections of villagers of Makhuam village and also without considering the pending court matter. The villagers of Makhuam have submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner, Tamenglong District, Manipur in this regard on 22 July 2017 to ensure that the arbitrarily sanctioned amount to the two persons be re-transferred to an appropriate Government account before the 31 July 2017 and for the related bank statement be furnished to villagers of Makhuam village accordingly.   

The villagers of Makhuam had made the representation to the Chief Minister on 10th December 2017b with a remark that in the event of failing to get a positive response for immediate intervention from the Government of Manipur within Ten (10) days i.e 19th December, the villagers will be constraint to launch intensive agitation including total ban of all construction works of Northern Frontier Railways within the jurisdiction of Makhuam village.  Ever since the ban on railway works, several vehicles have been torched by the villagers for defying the ban.

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