Thangjam Manorama

Thangjam Manorama

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Thangjam Manorama Profile

  • Name:
  • Thangjam Manorama
  • Died:
  • July 11, 2004

Thangjam Manorama Biography

Thangjam Manorama was a civilian from Manipur who became the victim of Indian army atrocities under the Armed Force Special Power Act (AFSPA), 1958. She was found shot dead on 11th July, 2004 and Indian paramilitary unit, 17th Assam Rifles was accused for this. Further investigations revealed that she was tortured and raped before being killed. But Assam Rifles claimed that she was shot in an encounter following her attempt to escape. It led to widespread and extended protests in Manipur and Delhi, and caught national media attention. Well-known Meithei author M. K. Binodini Devi returned her Padma Shree awards to mark her protest against such a heinous activity.

 

Thangjam Manorama was born in 1970. She was a Manipuri village girl who became an unfortunate victim of AFSPA at the age of 34. Manorama was picked up by “a strong-armed troops of 17th Assam Rifles” in the night between July 10 and 11, 2004 from her home in Imphal East District. At the time of the arrest, no incriminating items were found. Even while questioning she didn’t admit any.

 

She was extra-judicially executed by the Indian paramilitary unit, 17th Assam Rifles. Her dead body was found abandoned three kilometers away from her home. Her body was bullet-ridden and badly mutilated. The incident sparkled widespread protest across the state and a commission of inquiry was set up by the Manipur government the same year. The report was submitted in November. The report said she was tortured on her front porch, as the family watched. It said the men then took her away to “places”, and most of the injuries would reveal that she was shot when “helpless”.

 

However, since the Assam Rifles had been deployed under the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, state government doesn’t hold the power to do anything, as told by Guwahati High court. According to the verdict given by Supreme Court of India, a compensation of Rs. 10 lakhs was given to Manorama's family. But none of the culprits were punished.

Published: January 28, 2019

Updated: January 28, 2019

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