Security has been beefed up in the Manipur capital following Tuesday night's bomb explosion that claimed 17 lives in an area between Ragailong Kabui village and the Manipur Police Commando Complex in the Imphal West district.
In a move to track down the attackers, Assam Rifles and state police personnel conducted search operations in and around Hotel Excellency here on Wednesday. However, they made no arrest.
“Investigations are on and the recovered material has been sent for forensic examination,” L. Kailun, senior superintendent of police of Imphal West district, told HT. “We have to strengthen the security and checking of unauthorised parking of vehicles in view of Diwali,” he added.
Meanwhile, the Manipur-based outfit Kangleipak Communist Party's military affairs secretary Lalheiba Meitei claimed responsibility for the explosion in a statement circulated to the media here. The outfit said the attack was carried out after three days of continuous observation to wipe out the move of security forces to take bribes and encourage “unwanted gambling activities”, including lagao, a popular gambling sport organised ahead of Diwali.
Describing it as a final warning to those indulging in gambling, the outfit also accused the security forces of committing immoral activities in and around the area.
So far, 16 of the 17 deceased have been identified and their bodies have been taken away for last rites.