Human rights lawyer Leitanthem Umakanta Meitei, Secretary General of the
Threatened Indigenous Peoples' Society, was arrested without an arrest warrant
at his home by a team of police officers. They seized CDs and books from the
Threatened Indigenous Peoples' Society and the International Labour
Organisation, among other things.
Following the arrest, Mr. Umakanta Meitei was detained, interrogated,
allegedly tortured by the police, and denied access to a lawyer. He was charged
with being a member of, and supporting terrorist organisations and accused of
maintaining links with the illegal group 'Organisation to Save the Revolutionary
Movement in Manipur'.
On August 29, 2006, the Chief Judicial Magistrate ordered that Mr. Umakanta
Meitei be released on bail due to lack of evidence. Mr. Umakanta Meitei refused
to pay bail on the basis that the charges against him were false and he insisted
on an unconditional release. As a result, he was held in judicial custody for
another 15 days at the Sajiwa Central Jail.
The Chief Judicial Magistrate found that the police had tortured Mr. Umakanta
Meitei while he was in custody and ordered the prison authorities to arrange for
a medical examination by a doctor approved by the Health Department. In October,
2006, Mr. Leitanthem Umakanta Meitei was released and all charges against him
In November 2006, the Law Society sent letters of interventions to the
authorities in India.