Amit Shah addresses Manipur’s security forces: Take firm, quick action to stop violence and restore normality.
Monday, May 31, Imphal (Manipur) Union Home Minister Amit Shah visited Moreh and Kangpokpi on the third day of his visit to Manipur and held extensive discussions with civil society organisations and security forces. He instructed officials to take “stern and prompt actions to prevent violence and recover looted weapons to bring back normalcy at the earliest” (his words).
In an Imphal meeting with senior authorities, the Home Minister was given instructions. Senior government officials briefed Shah on the state of security in Manipur.
“The Home Minister met with senior authorities in Imphal to discuss security. According to a statement from the Home Ministry, “He ordered them to take firm and speedy measures to avoid violence, punish armed miscreants, and retrieve seized weapons to restore back normality as soon as possible.
The Home Minister met with a group from the Hill tribal council, Kuki Students Organisation, Kuki Chiefs Association, Tamil Sangam, Gorkha Samaj, and Manipuri Muslim Council during his visit to Manipur, which is scheduled to last four days and end on June 1.
The delegates made clear their strong support for the government’s efforts to bring about a return to normality in the state, according to the statement.
Shah conducted meetings in Kangpokpi with representatives of civil society groups such the Committee on Tribal Unity, Kuki Inpi Manipur, Kuki Student Organisation, Thadou Inpi, and well-known figures and academics.
According to the home minister, “supply of essential items in hill areas and helicopter services for emergency needs in Churachandpur, Moreh, and Kangpokpi will be ensured.”
The Home Minister also met with Kuki community members while visiting a relief camp at Kangpokpi. As soon as possible, peace in Manipur must be restored, and it must be made sure that people may return to their homes, added Shah. The Minister also went to an Imphal relief camp where Meitei community people were staying.
Shah stated at the meeting that “our resolve remains focused on leading Manipur back to the track of peace and harmony once again and their return to their homes at the earliest.”
Tuesday was Shah’s second day in Manipur, and during that time he had extensive conversations with a variety of people and groups in Imphal, including members of the civil society, well-known figures, academics, former military personnel, and public officials.
Senior officers from the Manipur Police, Central Armed Police Forces, and Indian Army were present while the Home Minister discussed the security situation.
“Peace and prosperity of Manipur is our top priority,” Shah stated during the meeting with security officers. To sternly deal with any actions upsetting the state’s tranquilly, he gave the officials orders.
“Together, we are committed to ensuring peace and prosperity in the state,” the Home Minister stated, reiterating the importance of women in Manipurn society.
On Tuesday, the Minister paid a visit to Churachandpur where he met with a group of influential people and representatives from civil society organisations.
Shah convened an all-party meeting in Imphal later that night, on Tuesday.
As soon as he landed in Imphal on Monday evening, he also presided over a meeting with the chief minister of Manipur, state ministers, senior leaders, and officials to assess the situation and develop a strategy for additional actions to return the area to normality.
The visit was planned in response to the Sunday killings of five people, including a Manipur police officer, the vandalization of a Bhartiya Janata Party MLA’s home, and the alleged looting of more than 1,000 weapons and rounds of ammunition by a crowd from the armouries of the Manipur Rifles and IRB.
Violence broke out in Manipur on May 3 at a rally called by the All Tribals Students Union (ATSU) to protest the demand that Meitei/Meetei be classified as a Scheduled Tribe (ST). Following a Manipur High Court order from April 19, the march was arranged in opposition to the petition for the Meitei minority in the state to be included in the ST category.