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Manipur Video: SC Demands Immediate Action Over Shocking Incident, Puts Govt on Notice

Chief Justice expresses deep concern as video of women being paraded naked sparks nationwide outrage; PM Modi vows strict action against perpetrators.
News Round Up

Image courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Thursday said it is “deeply disturbed” by the video of two women in Manipur being paraded naked. Terming it "simply unacceptable", a bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud directed the Centre and the state government to take immediate steps and apprise the apex court of what action has been taken.

"We will give a little time to the government to act. Otherwise, we will take action if nothing is happening on the ground," the bench comprising Justices P S Narasimha and Manoj Misra said. 

The CJI dictated this order: “The Court is deeply disturbed by the visuals of the video which have appeared in the media since yesterday about the perpetration of sexual assault and violence on women in Manipur. We are of the view that the Court must be apprised of the steps taken by the government to hold the perpetrators accountable and also to ensure that such instances are not repeated in the strife in Manipur. The visuals which are portrayed in the media would indicate reflects gross constitutional violations and infraction of human rights. Using women as instruments to perpetrate violence in a charged atmosphere is simply unacceptable in a constitutional democracy. We direct the Union and the State Government to take immediate steps to apprise the Court of what action has been taken", according to Live Law.

Tension mounted in the hills of Manipur after a May 4 video surfaced on Wednesday showing two women from one of the warring communities being paraded naked by a few men from the other side. 

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said the alleged incident of women being paraded naked in Manipur has shamed 140 crore Indians, asserting that the law will act with its full might and no guilty will be spared.

"My heart is full of pain and anger," he told reporters in his remarks ahead of Parliament's Monsoon Session, amid his criticism by opposition parties for not speaking on the ethnic violence in the northeast state. 

The PM requested that all chief ministers strengthen the law and order mechanism in their respective states, especially to protect women and take the most stringent action.

He also mentioned states like Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh, calling for boosting law and order and protecting women. 

"I want to assure the countrymen that no guilty will be spared. What has happened to these daughters of Manipur can never be forgiven," he said. 

Modi also asked parliamentarians to make full use of the session for extensive discussion on a host of bills which, he added, are in people's interest. The government has asked Twitter and other social media platforms to take down a video of two Manipur women paraded naked since the matter is being probed. 

The video was doing the rounds on the eve of a planned protest march announced by the Indigenous Tribal Leaders' Forum (ITLF) on Thursday to highlight their plight.  Police said a case of abduction, gang rape and murder has been registered at Nongpok Sekmai police station in Thoubal district against unknown armed miscreants. 

Sources said the videos were inflammatory, and as the matter is under investigation, Twitter and other social media companies have been asked to remove the video. 

The widely circulated video from Manipur, which shows a group of men molesting two women, has sparked outrage.

Meanwhile, Union Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani has said that she has spoken to Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh over the May 4 video showing two women being paraded naked by some men in the state. She termed the incident "condemnable and downright inhuman".  

In a tweet, the Union minister said, "The horrific video of sexual assault of two women emanating from Manipur is condemnable and downright inhuman. I spoke to CM N Biren Singh ji, who informed me that the investigation is underway and assured me that no effort will be spared to bring perpetrators to justice."

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