The indefinite blockade of Manipur vehicles by the Southern Angami Public Organisation (SAPO) is slowly turning into a crisis of great magnitude. In solidarity with the people of Manipur the All Assam Manipuri Youth Association (AAMYA) has called a counter blockade of sorts prohibiting Nagaland bound vehicles from entering and leaving Nagaland state. Meanwhile, several valley based organisations, including United Committee Manipur (UCM) have also threatened to impose a counter blockade if SAPO continues with its blockade. What we are wondering is why the hill based civil society organisations are silent with regard to the blockade.
Take it up with home minister
IFP Editorial: Chief Minister N Biren Singh should urgently bring the matter of blockade and Dzuko border dispute with the Union Home Minister.
Updated 29 Mar 2022, 7:44 pm
Both the general people of hills and the valley are suffering because of the blockade as stocks of food and other commodities are fast dwindling and even many petrol pumps have stopped fuel supply to the general public. Prices of essential commodities have sky-rocketed in Imphal and yet the state government remains in deep slumber. Those were the days when both Naga and Kuki organisations imposed indefinite blockade on the national highways in pursuit of their political demands or at the drop of a hat. But it had become a thing of the past as the ruling BJP managed to bring the Naga Peoples Front in the coalition government. In the last assembly, BJP was compelled to seek the help of NPF as it did not have the majority. But this time, it was able to secure an absolute majority on its own and still it partners with NPF with a view to consolidating peace and harmony in the hills. We had earlier suggested that if the arrangement with NPF is only for restricting bandhs and blockades inside Manipur, it defeats the purpose of having an alliance. It should extend beyond Manipur and NPF should take care of blockades from the neighbouring state also.
The state government had written to the Nagaland government to intervene and prevail upon the SAPO to do away with the blockade. CM Biren had said that the dispute is not between the state governments of Nagaland and Manipur but with an organisation and if the dispute cannot be solved at state to state level he will pursue the matter with the Centre. Well, the indefinite blockade has been going on for about four/five days and the general people want to know what he is doing to solve the crisis. The SAPO demand is that the Manipur government should withdraw its armed personnel and remove structures from the Kezoltsa area. While asserting that three-fourth of the entire area of Dzuko valley belongs to Manipur and the remaining to Nagaland, Chief Minister N Biren Singh said the IRB out post set up at Kezoltsa area was for precautionary measures to avoid unwanted incidents for the local tourists of Manipur. The Chief Minister should stick to his guns but he has a duty as well to solve the crisis and end the sufferings of the general public.
On Tuesday, Assam and Meghalaya signed an agreement to resolve the 50-year-old boundary dispute between their states. The chief ministers of the two states Himanta Biswa Sarma and Conrad Sangma signed the agreement in the presence of Union Home Minister Amit Shah. According to the Home Minister, 70 per cent of border dispute between the two states has been resolved with the agreement signed on Tuesday and further a survey will be done by the Survey of India with both states' involvement, and when that's done the actual demarcation will take place. With this new development, Chief Minister N Biren Singh should urgently bring the matter of blockade and Dzuko border dispute with the Union Home Minister.
First published:29 Mar 2022, 7:44 pm