Shifting loyalties

The Kuki lobby had chosen to lean on the self-appointed champions of minority as against the oppressive majority communities.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 16 Jan 2024, 10:10 pm

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The Kuki leaders and rabble-rousers are indeed an interesting lot. They keep shifting the goalposts whenever it suits them and their narrative howsoever disjointed. One moment, they will play the victim card to the hilt by bombarding the national media and social media with concocted historical narratives and false propaganda and in the not-so-distant past, as a victim of an imagined ‘genocide’ started by the majority Meitei community.

With Manipur being a BJP ruled state and a section of the national media so eager to lap up the false narratives that it continues to play the victim card over and over again. The so-called mainstream media has been dabbling in ‘majority oppressing minorities’ or ‘targeting religious minorities’ narratives while focusing on the present conflict in Manipur without even bothering to understand the ground realities. And the Kuki lobby had chosen to lean on these self-appointed champions of minority as against the oppressive majority communities.

The so-called champions of mainstream media had been all along judgmental while flagging the yarn of ‘victimhood’ and oppression of minorities by the majority community. No doubt, they are being influenced by their hatred of the right-wing forces while addressing the conflict in Manipur and they have fallen victim to the false narratives and yarns. When central agencies arrest the accused persons in the abduction of two Meitei teenagers, they cry foul and raise allegations of the agencies being partisan while also saying that the two teenagers have no business coming to a Kuki dominated area with a war raging on.


When Kuki militants murdered four innocent villagers of Kumbi area right under the noses of the security forces, they say the poor villagers were illegally collecting firewood from their forests and it is their fault that they are being killed. And a section of the media tried to legitimise the brutal killing by publishing the version of the villagers being trespassers. Then, as state forces begin operations to flush out the militants, they cry foul saying that they are being hounded by Meitei militia in the garb of state forces.

Off and on, Kuki militants have been attacking Meitei villages in the fringe areas and raining bullets and bombs. When state forces and Meiteis retaliate, they say Meiteis are attacking them without cause. These are but some of their characteristic propaganda, so dearly lapped up by a section of the media.

Now comes the question of their shifting loyalties. When Union Home Minister Amit Shah came to Manipur and visited Kangpokpi, the Kukis gave him a rousing welcome with the Indian tricolour fluttering everywhere. The mood was like the Lord had finally heard their prayer for deliverance as they were pinning their hopes on the central BJP leadership.


Indeed, the Kukis and their kindred had voted for BJP in the last assembly elections gifting them seven MLAs. That BJP and Kuki militants had a ’secret pact’ came out in the open with a SoO leader reminding them of the ‘loyalty’ of the Kukis. And it was indeed embarrassing for the BJP. When Amit Shah went back to New Delhi and ‘forgot’ about the demands placed by them, they began cursing him and his party even to the extent of using expletives usually reserved for the Meiteis.

Most recently, the Kukis of Kangpokpi were all smiles for the Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and welcomed him with ‘Kukiland’ banners, pleading with him to propagate their cause. What Rahul Gandhi would have thought of the ‘Kukiland’ banner in the complex political environment of the state is his business. As Lok Sabha elections draw near, this would be hyped up by the BJP. Interestingly, the much flaunted ‘Zo’ brotherhood is missing from the banner. Is it a case of selective ‘dementia’ or a reflection of the tension brewing between the Kukis and Zomis in ‘distant’ Churachandpur? One can never tell.



First published:


rahul gandhikuki militantskukilandmanipur crisis

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur


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