Various Kuki-Zo bodies, including the Kuki Inpi Manipur, have deplored Union Home Minister’s remark in Parliament in a ptotest demonstration near Gamgiphai in Kangpokpi District on Sunday.
Meanwhile, Kuki Inpi Manipur has demanded an apology from Union Home Minister Amit Shah in relation to his statement in Parliament.
Almost 10,000 Kuki-Zo women across Kangpokpi district participated in the sit-in-protest organised by the Kuki-Zo women of the district under the aegis of CoTU Women Wing.
The placards read, “Amit Shah needs to own his mistake”, “Amit Shah needs to clarify his tongue slip in Parliament”, “We Are Indians, Not Illegal Infiltrators”, “Our Existence In Manipur Predates British Rule”, among others.
The protesters also shouted slogans such as, “We Are Indians”, “We condemn the Union Home Minister’s Remark in Parliament”, “We Want Constitutional Solutions”, and “We Want Justice”.
The CoTU Women Wing Convenor, Neinu said, the existence of the Kuki-Zo people in Manipur predates British rule and they have a historical presence in Manipur preceding India’s independence.
Meanwhile, CoTU articulated its dismay over the minister’s statement wherein he claimed that the current ethnic violence is a result of the influx of Kukis from Myanmar following the military coup in February 2021.
Ng Lun Kipgen, Coordinator of the CoTU’s Media Cell said that blaming a minority community for causing mayhem in Manipur is an irresponsible statement.
The Kuki Inpi Manipur, the apex body of the Kuki tribes, also condemned the Union Home Minister’s statement in Parliament terming it as an “unparliamentary and disheartening” remark.
KIM Information and Publicity Secretary, Janghaolun Haokip said that the Kuki Inpi Manipur strongly deplored the statement made by the Union Home Minister Amit Shah during the parliament monsoon session on August 9.
He said that the remark is largely speculative with no valid proof or evidence while adding that the present carnage in Manipur has no link whatsoever with the much-hyped ‘influx’ of Kukis into Manipur or Mizoram.
He continued that the Meiteis’ insecurity to ‘influx of Kukis’ from Myanmar into Manipur is over-hyped.
He also said that the union home minister has not only obliterated but also negated the Kukis of their history, origin, and identity.
The KIM statement said, the developments in Myanmar had serious ramifications here in Manipur and on the valley based insurgent groups taking refuge in Myanmar as the military junta could no longer enjoy protection due to the intensified pro-democracy uprising.
And as such, the valley insurgents sought the protection of Biren government and he in turn misled and misinformed the Centre about the Kukis and even launched an ethnic cleansing campaign against them so as to expand and consolidate Meiteis’ influence in every part of Manipur, the statement added.
He then said that in view of the grave blunder and gross injustices meted out to the Kukis, it is prudent on the part of the union home minister to rise above party politics/political vendetta, thereby clarify his parliament’s speech with evidence, if any, and disown his statement by tendering apology to the aggrieved Kukis in case he failed to produce concrete evidence on the origin of the present conflict vis-a-vis Kuki refugees from Myanmar.