Manipur Unrest: Mob Targets Police, Courts; Tear Gas Used, 10+ Injured

In Manipur, an unsettling situation unfolded on Thursday as security forces resorted to the use of tear gas shells and stun bombs to disperse protesters attempting to storm police stations and courts. The confrontation led to more than ten individuals sustaining injuries, highlighting the escalating tensions in the region.

The incident underscores the challenges faced by authorities in maintaining law and order in Manipur and the importance of addressing the root causes of the unrest through peaceful means. It is crucial for all stakeholders to engage in constructive dialogue to find lasting solutions to the issues that have led to these protests and avoid further escalation of tensions.

Manipur Unrest Persists as Protesters Demand Release of Arrested Youths; Curfew Relaxation Cancelled as Precautionary Measure

The unrest in Manipur continues to escalate as protesters persist in their demand for the unconditional release of five youths who were arrested on September 16th. In response to the ongoing turmoil, the state government has taken precautionary measures by canceling the relaxation of curfew in both districts of Imphal, with the curfew now remaining in effect past 5 p.m.

The protesters’ demand for the release of the arrested youths underscores the significance of addressing their grievances and ensuring that due legal processes are followed. This situation has implications not only for the rule of law but also for the broader stability of the region.

Hundreds of Protesters Respond to Local Clubs’ Call, Attempt to Enter Police Stations in Manipur

In response to a call issued by six local clubs and Mira Pabis, hundreds of protesters took to the streets in Manipur, armed with placards and slogans. Their objective was to enter several police stations, including the Porompat Police Station in Imphal East and the Singjamei Police Station and Kwakithel Police Station in the Imphal West district.

The mobilization of protesters underlines the urgency and significance of their cause, drawing attention to the need for a concerted effort to address their concerns. The involvement of local clubs and community leaders underscores the depth of frustration and dissatisfaction among the populace.

Amidst the ongoing protests in Manipur, law enforcement authorities, including police and personnel from the Rapid Action Force (RAF), resorted to the use of tear gas rounds to disperse the gathered crowd.

Security forces used stun bombs to disperse the protesters.

Residents Express Concerns Over Safety Amidst Arrests and Unrest in Manipur

Amidst the ongoing turmoil in Manipur, the voices of concerned residents have emerged, echoing their worries about personal safety and the protection of their communities. These concerns have arisen in the wake of the arrest of five youths and a perceived lack of action by the government.

One young man lamented, “Who will protect us?” as he voiced the anxieties of many residents who feel vulnerable amidst the escalating tensions. He explained that their actions were a last resort, driven by the government’s reluctance to release the arrested youths. Their concern is that the absence of village volunteers, who are now being apprehended, may leave Maitei villages vulnerable to the activities of Kuki miscreants.

The apprehensions are not unfounded, as women in the region have alleged that the state government has turned a blind eye to ongoing attacks by Kuki miscreants, who are armed with sophisticated weapons. These criminals have reportedly carried out attacks on Maitei villages and openly extorted money from residents along the highways.

The situation took a further tumultuous turn as a mob attempted to enter the Mayang Imphal Police Station in Imphal West District and the Andro Police Station in Imphal East District, resulting in mass arrests and ensuing chaos.

Protesters hurled glass shards at the police.

Chairman of Langthabal Kendra United Clubs Coordinating Committee Initiates Mass Arrest Movement Amid Government Inaction

Yumnam Hitler, the Chairman of the Langthabal Kendra United Clubs Coordinating Committee, has expressed deep concern over the government’s perceived inaction in the matter of releasing the five arrested youths. Frustrated by the lack of progress, Hitler and the coordinating committee have resolved to commence a voluntary mass arrest movement in response to the government’s failure to address their demands.

The decision to initiate a mass arrest movement underscores the growing impatience and frustration among residents of Manipur regarding the detention of the five individuals. It reflects the determination of the coordinating committee to pursue a course of action that draws attention to the issue and seeks to secure the release of the arrested youths.

The RAF used rubber balls to disperse the opposition.

Five Youths Arrested on September 16th: Weapons and Police Uniforms Seized

On September 16th, Manipur Police apprehended five individuals on charges of possessing sophisticated weapons and being in possession of police uniforms. Subsequently, all five were presented before a judicial magistrate and remanded to police custody, as confirmed by a police statement.

M. Pradeep Singh, the Additional Home Secretary, disclosed that these five youths had been arrested in connection with the possession of weaponry believed to have been looted from a special police armory. One of the individuals was reportedly wearing the uniform of a police commando at the time of their arrest. Additionally, it has come to light that the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) has been invoked against one of the arrested individuals.

Curfew Relaxation Cancelled Amidst Escalating Violence in Imphal

As a response to the escalating violence and unrest, the state government has taken the decision to cancel curfew relaxation in both districts of Imphal during the evening hours. The move comes as a precautionary measure to maintain public safety and control the situation.

In accordance with the order issued by the District Magistrate of Imphal West, the previously relaxed curfew, which had been in effect from 5 am to 9 pm on September 21st, has been abruptly withdrawn starting from 5 pm. This decision effectively enforces restrictions on the movement of the general public in all areas within the specified districts. Similar directives have also been issued in the Imphal East district.

Fatal Shootings Continue in Manipur Amidst Ongoing Community Dispute

The northeastern state of Manipur has witnessed a troubling series of fatal shootings, with three individuals losing their lives in Kangpokpi on September 12. According to reports from the news agency PTI, unidentified assailants carried out a lethal attack, indiscriminately firing upon villagers in the region situated between Ireng and Karam Wafei villages within the Canggui area at approximately 8:20 am, resulting in the tragic loss of three lives.

This incident follows a grim pattern of violence that has plagued the region. On September 8, another tragic event unfolded in Palel, Tengnopal, where three individuals lost their lives, and over 50 were injured during a violent outbreak.

These events are indicative of a prolonged dispute between the Kuki and Maitei communities, primarily centered around issues of reservation. Tragically, these confrontations have resulted in the loss of more than 160 lives in Manipur since May 3.

This image of the protest is from Imphal

Chief Minister’s Non-Endorsement: BJP MLAs Sign Resolution Promising to Safeguard Manipur’s Territorial Integrity

A significant development has emerged in Manipur’s political landscape as 23 BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) MLAs (Members of Legislative Assembly) have come together to sign a resolution, pledging their commitment to safeguard the territorial integrity of Manipur. The resolution also includes a promise to engage with the central government in Delhi to find a viable solution to the ongoing crisis in the state. However, it is noteworthy that Chief Minister N. Biren Singh chose not to sign the proposal.

This decision by the BJP MLAs signals their collective determination to address the pressing issues facing Manipur and find an amicable resolution to the challenges at hand. The commitment to territorial integrity underscores the importance of unity in maintaining the state’s boundaries and sovereignty.

The violence in Manipur has been fueled by a complex interplay of historical, social, and ethnic factors. Here are four key reasons for the ongoing violence in Manipur:

  1. Ethnic and Communal Divide:
  • Manipur is home to three major communities: Maitei, Naga, and Kuki, each with distinct cultural and religious backgrounds. These communities have coexisted for centuries but have also experienced periods of tension and conflict due to differences in culture, religion, and ethnicity.
  1. Territorial Disputes:
  • A significant source of conflict in Manipur stems from territorial disputes between various ethnic groups over land and resources. The distribution of these communities across the state, with Maiteis concentrated in the Imphal Valley and Naga-Kuki spread across the majority of the state, has led to competition and disputes over territory.
  1. Reservation and Political Representation:
  • The issue of reservation for different ethnic groups in government jobs and educational institutions has been a contentious one. Competing demands for greater representation and benefits have often resulted in protests and clashes between communities, leading to violence.
  1. Historical Grievances:
  • Historical grievances, including land disputes, marginalization, and perceived injustices, have contributed to a sense of discontent among various communities. These grievances often resurface and manifest in protests and conflicts, further exacerbating the overall situation.

The combination of these factors has created a volatile environment in Manipur, marked by periodic outbreaks of violence and unrest. Addressing these deep-rooted issues will require a comprehensive and inclusive approach that promotes dialogue, reconciliation, and equitable resource distribution while respecting the unique identities and aspirations of the state’s diverse communities.

The dispute in Manipur has its origins in a complex web of historical, social, and political factors:

  1. Demand for Tribal Status by Maitei Community: The Maitei community has long demanded tribal status. They argue that prior to Manipur’s merger with India in 1949, they were recognized as a tribal community. The Manipur High Court recommended their inclusion in the Scheduled Tribe (ST) category, which has been a point of contention.
  2. Historical Background: According to the Maitei community, their kings historically invited Kukis from Myanmar to aid in a conflict. Afterward, these Kukis settled in Manipur, and over time, they engaged in activities such as deforestation and opium cultivation, contributing to drug-related issues in the region. This has fueled tensions and conflicts.
  3. Reservation Dispute: The Naga-Kuki communities oppose granting reservation to the Maitei community, fearing that it would dilute their own rights and political representation. The Imphal Valley, predominantly inhabited by Maiteis, already holds the majority of assembly seats (40 out of 60), and granting tribal status to Maiteis could further impact the political landscape.
  4. Political Dynamics: Manipur’s political landscape is heavily influenced by these ethnic dynamics. Out of the 60 MLAs in the state, 40 represent Maitei-dominated areas, while the Naga-Kuki communities hold 20 seats. Despite the significant Maitei majority, only two of the state’s 12 Chief Ministers have come from their community, reflecting ongoing political tensions and challenges related to representation and governance.

Niyati Rao

Niyati Rao is a seasoned writer and avid consumer who specializes in crafting informative and engaging articles and product reviews. With a passion for research and a knack for finding the best deals, Niyati enjoys helping readers make informed decisions about their purchases.