My Manipur, an Imphal-based body, reflecting on the releases and statements of some tribal bodies objecting to the deployment of state forces in Moreh on Thursday asserted that the Manipur government already has full and complete authority to deploy its forces at any location within the territorial jurisdiction of the entire state of Manipur.
Spokesperson of My Manipur, Bedajeet H, in a release, said that Moreh town and the surrounding areas which come under the Yangoupokpi Lokchao Reserve Forest do not belong to any particular community in Manipur. No community, civil society organisations, village chiefs, groups or bodies have the right to claim it as theirs and have no authority over it, it maintained.
It asserted that Moreh town belongs to every indigenous community of Manipur and no community can claim ownership of this integral part of India. It also listed various facts advocating its statements.
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It said that the Yangoupokpi Lokchao Forest, which was declared a Reserve Forest in 1946 by the Manipur State Darbar and later declared a Wildlife Sanctuary by the State Forest Department in 1989, is situated near the Sub-Divisional headquarters town of Moreh.
It stated adding that the national highway 39 bifurcates the sanctuary into two parts. It also noted the boundary mentioned in the schedule with Waksu Lok, the footpath from Sibong village to Leibi village extending up to Dolaibung Kuki Village in the North; Lokchao river in the south; Indo Myanmar international boundary in the East and Lokchao river in the west.
The important villages near the Sanctuary are Moreh, Govajang, Satang, Saikul, Dolaidung Kuki, Kampang, Leibi Kuki, Kwatha, Khudengthabi and Lokchao, it mentioned. It added that the declaration of Yangoupokpi Lokchao forest as a Reserve Forest and a Wild Life Sanctuary was made before the creation of Tengnoupal district in 2016.
With Moreh town coming under Yangoupokpi Wild Life Sanctuary, it is the bounden duty of the Manipur government to conserve and protect the area by exercising its powers and deployment of any law enforcement agencies as required and necessary, it asserted. Any organization involved in distorting facts and history to advance their interest must immediately stop such manipulation, the release said.