INDIA bloc leaders urge Manipur govt to restore peace, normalcy in state at the earliest

IANS Photo

IANS Photo

Imphal, June 19 (IANS): The Congress-led INDIA bloc, comprising 10 parties, on Wednesday, urged the Manipur government to restore peace and normalcy in the state at the earliest.

An INDIA bloc delegation, led by former Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh, separately met Governor Anusuiya Uikey and Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and demanded an early amicable solution to the ethnic crisis.

A Raj Bhavan statement said that Ibobi Singh, while expressing disappointment and unhappiness with the protracted conflict, which has been going on since May 3 last year, said Jiribam district has become the new hotspot of violence and its residents have fled their homes and have been taking shelter in various relief camps.

"Expressing concerns over the incidents, Singh urged the Governor to ensure adequate state security forces in the Jiribam district. Other leaders of the delegation drew the attention of the Governor for ensuring free flow vehicular movement so that essential commodities including petroleum products are made available as usual," an INDIA bloc statement said.

The INDIA bloc delegation also urged that the Centre and the state governments should take necessary actions to restore peace and normalcy in the state.

The Governor told the delegation that all efforts have been made to ensure peace and security in the state and to bring a lasting solution to the crisis. She said that she had apprised President Droupadi Murmu, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman of the situation in the state and requested them to take immediate steps to stop all forms of violence, to bridge the gap between the two communities, and bring about a long-lasting peace in the state, a Raj Bhavan statement said.

She also said that she had informed the Home Minister about the condition of the displaced people who have been taking shelter in various relief camps, and the Finance Minister about the economic condition in the state and requested financial assistance. The Governor assured the delegation that she would continue her efforts to restore peace and normalcy in the state, the Raj Bhavan statement said.

Communist Party of India leader M. Nara, who was also in the INDIA bloc delegation, said that they raised similar demands before the Chief Minister.

He told the media that the violence-hit people in Jiribam district were keen to return to their homes if the state government provided adequate security to them.

Meanwhile, with further improvement of the situation in Jiribam district, adjoining southern Assam, the district administration announced a relaxation of the curfew for four and a half hours from 9 a.m. on Thursday too, like Wednesday.

The indefinite curfew was imposed in mixed-population Jiribam district after the killing of 59-year-old farmer Soibam Saratkumar Singh on June 6, leading to around 900 tribals belonging to the Kuki and Hmar communities taking shelter at the homes of relatives and friends in two villages in the Cachar district of southern Assam, while around 1,000 people, mostly belonging to the Meitei community, are now sheltered in seven relief camps in Jiribam.