A week after the outbreak of communal violence in Manipur that claimed over 60 lives and destroyed several properties, including places of worship, normalcy is slowly being restored in the state. The curfew has been relaxed for a few hours in the absence of reports of any violence in any district.
The Dolaithabi and Pukhao regions in Imphal East, which are considered vulnerable areas, reported zero violence in the last two-three days, according to sources.
It may be mentioned that a team of combined security forces, including Manipur police commandos, had successfully driven out some suspected militants under SoO from the 6th IRB post located at Dolaithabi as well as from the particular hill range on the night of May 6. The camp was then occupied by a team of 22 Assam Rifles and later overtaken by a team of the 18 Assam Rifles.
According to reliable sources, the unit of the 6th IRB is preparing to repossess its camp. While the team of 18 AR is currently stationed at the camp, a big team of combined state forces is being deployed around the periphery of the camp.
According to the sources, the last reported fire exchange between the suspected militant group and civilians in that region was on May 6, and since then there has been a ceasefire in that particular region as the security forces have overpowered the region.
In another incident, a house at Pukhao Ahallup, which is located three km away from Dolaithabi village, caught fire from a short circuit on Monday night. Mistaking the fire as an attack by militants, the locals reportedly blank fired some rounds, as narrated by the locals.
However, during a visit to the Dolaithabi area by the media team, calm prevailed in the area, and a restoration of normalcy was seen in that particular region.
As many as four villages, inhabited by the Meetei community, were completely burned down on May 3 and 4. The villages are Litanpokpi, Ekou, Sadu Yenguman, and Dolaithabi. While women and children of these villages and some other villages nearby were evacuated to various relief camps, which were opened by local bodies at Khundrakpam, the menfolk stood guard with weapons, including licensed guns, to defend the villages.