Imphal, May 31, 2023, IANS
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who has been closely monitoring the security situation in Manipur following the outbreak of ethnic violence, has issued strict directives to security officials to take decisive action against any activities that disrupt peace in the northeastern state.
Arriving in Imphal on Monday night, Shah has been actively engaging with various stakeholders in a series of meetings.
As part of his visit, he also made a visit to Churachandpur, one of the districts severely impacted by the ongoing ethnic violence that has engulfed the state since May 3.
The violence has resulted in a tragic death toll of at least 75 individuals, with over 300 people sustaining injuries.
Taking to social media, Shah shared, "I have reviewed the security situation in Manipur during a meeting with senior officials from the Manipur Police, Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs), and the Indian Army in Imphal.
The peace and prosperity of Manipur are of utmost importance, and I have instructed them to take strict action against any activities that disturb peace."
On Tuesday evening, Shah chaired an all-party meeting in Imphal, where he called upon party leaders to actively contribute towards restoring normalcy and communal harmony in Manipur.
He reassured the leaders that the central government is fully committed to bringing peace back to the state. "Peace and prosperity in Manipur remain our top priorities," emphasized Shah.
During the all-party meeting, the Home Minister apprised the leaders that the decisions taken during the Cabinet meeting held the previous night would be implemented as part of the peace process.
These decisions encompass immediate steps to restore normalcy and peace, improving the law and order situation, expediting relief measures, providing compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased, offering job opportunities to family members of the victims, and reopening BSNL telephone lines to dispel any rumors.
While visiting Churachandpur, a district with a significant tribal population, Shah called upon local leaders to play an active role in curbing violence. He assured them that a political solution to address the situation would be pursued promptly.
In addition, Shah pledged a CBI inquiry into the violence and announced the provision of 20 tonnes of rice as relief for the tribal communities in Manipur.
Responding to the demand for a separate state for the tribals, raised by ten tribal MLAs (including seven from the ruling BJP) and other tribal leaders, Shah assured the all-party meeting that the territorial integrity of Manipur would be safeguarded at all costs.
He urged civil society leaders to actively participate in the efforts to restore peace in the state.
Furthermore, Shah held a closed-door discussion in Churachandpur with various tribal leaders, intellectuals, and prominent citizens, during which he attentively listened to their perspectives on restoring normalcy.
The meetings were attended by several notable figures including Union Minister of State for Home, Nityanand Rai, BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra, Home Secretary A.K. Bhalla, Director General of Assam Rifles Lt Gen Pradeep Chandran Nair, Director of Intelligence Bureau Tapan Kumar Deka, Director General of Manipur Police P. Doungel, and other officials from both the central and state governments.
Continuing his visit on Wednesday, Shah is scheduled to visit Moreh, a town situated along the Myanmar border, and Kangpokpi, where he will engage with delegations from various local groups and civil society organizations.
Later in the day, he will conduct a comprehensive security review meeting in Imphal to assess the progress made and to determine further steps towards restoring peace and stability in Manipur. (Edited)