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5 school principals booked for boycotting R-Day in Manipur
Correspondent IMPHAL, JAN 27:
Published on 28 Jan. 2009 1:10 AM IST
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Authorities suspended seven principals of government schools for not participating in Republic Day celebration in Imphal on Monday. They were arrested by the police on alleged charges of extending support to the Republic Day boycott called by the separatist outfits in Manipur on Monday. Police is yet to arrest the principal of the Model Higher Secondary School W Biren and it's vice principal S Tomba who has been placed under suspension. The five principals picked by the police are Y Nonganlei of TG Higher Secondary School, S Khomdonbi Devi of Johnston Higher Secondary Schoolk, Ch Padma Devi of CC Higher Secondary School, Y Ibetombi of Ibotonsana Higher Secondary School and L Rashi of Ram Lal Paul Hgiher Secondary School. Two days ahead of Republic Day celebration in Imphal, the five suspended principals intimated to the director of the education (school) through its joint director stating their schools would not participate in the Republic Day celebration responding to the order of the director asking them to participate with march past contingent of students. Later, it was learnt that submission of the principals was related with the threats posed on them by the members of the banned separatist out People Revolutionary Front (PRF). Director of the state directorate of education(s) M Harekrishna Singh on January 14 issued orders to six higher secondary schools asking them to participate in the Republic Day celebration in the state capital with a march past contingent. Following the order of the director, a contingent each of the six schools with 50 students attended rehearsal which was conducted at the parade ground of the 1st Manipur Rifles. But some days later, members of the RPF infiltrated and personally contacted the principals and students of the schools and threatened of dire consequences if they participated in the celebration defying their ban on people's participation by the outfit. Members of the same outfit once again threatened the students and principals of the six schools when they attended the full-dress rehearsal on January 23 which led to the submission of the intimation to the director informing their decisions not to participate in the celebration on January 24. In a follow up action, the director of the school education issued orders placing the principals under suspension from their service. Police on Tuesday arrested the principals today after registering cases against them and would be produced before the chief judicial magistrate for custody. A spokesperson of the All Manipur Higher Secondary Welfare Association (AMHSWA) when contacted said that even though the threats of the militants persist, the students of the said five schools participated in the march past on Republic Day and some of them won positions in the march past competition announced on Monday.

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