Six teachers and eight students of the Manipur University, who were arrested on September 21 after police raided the boys’ hostel following a complaint by the Vice Chancellor’s office, were released on Tuesday. The case against them was closed by a local court, after the investigation officer requested it on the grounds of insufficiency of evidence.
A total of 89 students and six teachers had been arrested on the night of September 21. An FIR was lodged by the then acting Vice Chancellor Yugindro Singh. The charges slapped on the accused included attempt to murder, kidnapping, illegal confinement, among other charges. However, most of the arrested students were released in the days that followed.
On the day of the raid, protests by the students reportedly prompted the police to fire several rounds of tear gas shells, in an attempt to disperse the crowd. Several students sustained injuries during the scuffle. The police action was strongly condemned, and had triggered massive protests by the students of the university. The female hostellers of the university went on a hunger strike, demanding immediate and unconditional release of the arrested teachers and the students.
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Yugindro Singh had been appointed as the acting vice chancellor soon after the suspension of previous VC A P Pandey, who was accused of being involved in financial and administrative irregularities. But, in a landmark judgement on two PILs combined, Professor Yugindro Singh was suspended by the High Court of Manipur, and former state secretary Jarnail Singh was appointed as the university’s administrator.
On Tuesday morning, N Biren Singh, the chief minister of Manipur, announced that all the students and teachers would be released during the day, and normalcy will once again be restored in the university. The minister said that this move followed an agreement reached between the student bodies and the government.
Governor Najma Heptulla congratulated the newly appointed administrator Jarnail Singh, and expressed joy at the students and teachers. She said that this was a step towards restoring normalcy in the university.