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The Manipur University Students’ Union (MUSU) Monday banned Imphal-based newspapers inside the university campus as a mark of protest against “partiality” shown by journalist fraternity with regards to the detention of NSA detainee Keshorchandra Wangkhem.
Laishram Kenedy, secretary MUSU condemned the stance of All Manipur Working Journalist Union (AMWJU) disowning Wangkhem.
“We have lost our trust in journalist fraternity of Manipur. They have disowned one of their own and maintained silence over the issue. Their justification on the matter is not reasonable,” said Kenedy.
AMWJU president Brozendro Ningomba, who is also the chief editor of the ISTV network, where Wangkhem used to work before he was arrested, said Wangkhem was not a journalist.
He contended that Wangkhem was assigned as newsreader and translator at ISTV network and cannot be regarded as a journalist.
Ningomba, in a letter to the Indian Journalist Union (IJU) last Friday, reiterated his stance on Wangkhem’s. The letter went viral on social media drawing flak from different angles.
“AMWJU’s clarification that Keshorchandra Wangkhem is not a journalist is like parents disowning their own child for their wrongdoing”, said the MUSU secretary.
The MUSU secretary informed that the ban will remain effective until Wangkhem is released from detention. The Union, however, relaxed two newspapers from the purview of the boycott.
The media fraternity in Manipur has come under intense criticism from various quarters, particularly the Journalist body AMWJU for their alleged partiality in dealing with Wangkhem’s case.
AMWJU has convened an emergency general body meeting on Tuesday to discuss criticism against the fraternity particularly in social media.