Manipur govt downsizes security for VIPs to provide cover to farmers

Imphal, July 9 (IANS): To provide security to the farmers, the Manipur government has downsized security for VIPs, police said on Sunday. A police official said that 2,207 additional security personnel would be provided in seven districts and the Superintendents of Police concerned, would deploy security in consultations with the Agricultural Department and the local farmers. “We have shortage of security personnel in view of the current unrest in Manipur. That’s why we have partially curtailed the VIP security to provide security to the farmers,” the official told IANS.

According to the official, 822 additional security personnel would be deployed in providing security to farmers in Imphal West district, followed by 300 security personnel in Churachandpur, 298 in Imphal East, 236 in Bishnupur, 204 in Kakching, 200 in Kangpokpi, and 147 in Thoubal district. As the planting period of the current agriculture season is very short, the security would be provided to the farmers for their uninterrupted farming work.

The police official said that the government has requested the farmers not to venture out to their paddy fields without any security and farmers were asked to contact the concerned police stations and the Superintendents of Police of their respective districts before moving to their agricultural fields. Earlier, Assam Rifles also provided security to the farmers while they are working in their fields. Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh last week discussed with the Ministers and officials the issue of ensuring uninterrupted supply of fertilisers and other agricultural inputs to the farmers. Officials said that the Chief Minister had directed that all out efforts must be taken to supply the fertilisers and other agricultural inputs to the farmers, specially those living in the violence-hit areas.