What Is Happening In Manipur?

by Syed Shadab Ali Gillani

SRINAGAR: The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the centre and the state of Manipur to take the required actions to improve security and provide aid and rehabilitation to those affected by ethnic violence in the northeastern state. Besides, the apex court asked the Centre and the Manipur government to file a status report in ten days and posted the matter for hearing on May 17.

Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud said the top court is concerned deeply about the loss of life and property because of the violence in the state. “Our immediate goal is to protect, rescue, and rehabilitate people,” the Supreme Court observed, asking the Centre and the state government for information on relief camps. “They must be returned to their homes safely and religious sites must also be safeguarded.”

Tushar Mehta, Solicitor General, represented both the Centre and the Manipur government. He notified the Supreme Court panel of the efforts the government had taken to address the violence. He informed the court that 52 companies of the Central Armed Police Force, as well as Army and Assam Rifles contingents, had been deployed in the conflict zones.

Mehta told the division bench, which also included Justices PS Narasimha and JB Pardiwala, that flag marches and peace meetings are being organised in areas of violence.  The Supreme Court ordered that all necessary steps be made to rehabilitate people who had been displaced.

Earlier, clashes have erupted between Meiteis, the predominant community in Imphal valley with over 53 per cent of the entire state population, and tribal populations, particularly Kukis, who live in the hill regions, since Wednesday. The plan to add Meiteis to the scheduled tribal category was the direct cause of the violence.

More than 50 people have reportedly been killed in violent clashes between the tribals living in the Manipur hills and the majority Meitei community residing in the Imphal Valley over the latter’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. More than 23,000 people have been rescued and sheltered in military garrisons and relief camps, Orissa Post reported.

Shashi Tharoor, the senior Congress politician, took to Twitter to condemn the BJP government over the violence in Manipur. “As the Manipur violence persists, all right-thinking Indians must ask themselves what happened to the much-vaunted good governance we had been promised. The voters of Manipur are feeling grossly betrayed just a year after putting the BJP in power in their state. It’s time for President’s Rule; the state Govt is just not up to the job they were elected to do,” Tharoor tweeted.

Earlier today Assam Rifles tweeted that, “Modi Battalion of #AssamRifles on 07 May, organised an interaction programme for the community leaders of Kuki and Meitei & CSOs of Pallel. The focus was to come together and maintain peace & tranquillity in the times when Manipur state has seen unprecedented violence.”


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