Imphal: Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and opposition leader Okram Ibobi Singh have stressed the need to protect women from sex-related crimes after more than 50 men and women were taken into custody for “indecent” dancing under the influence of alcohol at a restaurant here.
A joint team of police, students and women vigilantes on Thursday night raided the Puzzle restaurant, around one km away from the office of the Chief Minister and opposition leader.
Manipur has been a dry state since 1991.
Police said that more than 50 men and women have been taken into custody. Some women and men managed to escape.
Manjit Sarangthem, president of All Manipur Students’ Union and convener of the students’ wing of Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit system, said, “With the cooperation of the people in general and women vigilantes in particular the restaurant is closed down for ever.”
He said, “There was a music concert in the restaurant which charged Rs 300 each as entry fee. Our volunteers found that some married men and women were dancing indecently. Some of them were in highly objectionable situation in the darkened rooms. There were evidences of drinking inside the rooms.”
Chief Minister Biren Singh said, “Law will take its own course. The government is giving a free hand to police and others in due discharge of their duties.”
Both Biren and Ibobi underlined the need to check crimes against women. “Let there be no tears on the faces of our mothers and sisters,” Ibobi said.
Biren said, “The government is all for the protection of the intrepid women who have carved a proud niche in the history of the country.”
Sarangthem said, “We shall never tolerate the imitation of western culture in Manipur in this manner.”