This is the beginning of my struggle: Wangkhem


GUWAHATI, April 11: Manipur journalist Kishorechandra Wangkhem walked out free on Wednesday after spending 134 days in jail. “I have learnt a lot of lessons in jail. The best lesson is that you need not bow or apologize for speaking the truth or something good that you have done,” Wangkhem said. The Manipur HC had on Monday quashed the order of a lower court under which Wangkhem was detained under National Security Act and sent to one year’s “detention”.
“If I had bowed down and given up, this kind of authoritarian nature will continue. Now, I have the confidence to fight for justice and defend human rights,” the 39-year-old journalist said.“This is the beginning of my struggle. A lot of people met me when I was arrested. Some said they had been threatened for speaking against this government. Others said they were threatened for comments on social media. I think I should, as a human rights defender and journalist, support them. This is not the end, rather this is the beginning,” Wangkhem said.
Ranjita Elangbam, the journalist’s wife, said, “Justice was delayed but not denied.” Wangkhem added, “A big, loud and clear message to the government is that we are living in a democracy. Criticism is a part and parcel of a democracy. The government should have the tolerance to listen to different voices. If not, democracy is going to be ruined.” He thanked the Manipur High Court for delivering justice to him. (Courtesy: NIE)