The joint general body meeting of All Manipur Working Journalists Union (AMWJU) and Editors Guild Manipur on Tuesday strongly condemned the arrest and detention of TV journalist Kishorechandra Wangkhem under NSA.
Wangkhem was arrested on November 20 under NSA on the charge of criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren for celebraing the birth anniversary of Rani of Jhansi in Imphal.
Wangkhem in his Facebook post contended that the iconic figure of the 1857 freedom struggle had nothing to do with Manipur, and called Biren a “puppet” of some national leaders.
A local court ruled that since it was a mere “expression of opinion in the street language,” Wangkhem was not guilty of sedition and ordered his release on November 26. However, he was arrested the next day under the National Security Act.
The AMWJU meeting resolved to send another letter to the Indian Journalists Union replacing the earlier one. The AMWJU president had mentioned in the letter that Wangkhem was not a “journalist” as he was a news reader and translator.
The meeting also condemned the unparliamentarian expressions used by Wangkhem in his post.
Wangkhem, now lodged in the Central Jail Sajiwa, said he would fight for justice. His wife Ranjita Elangbam said she has not received any help. However some women activists had staged a sit-in demanding Wangkhem’s release.