A one-day sit-in-protest was held on Saturday at Pukhao Ahullup near Dolaithabi Dam in Imphal East against the alleged involvement of SoO militants in attacking and displacing the Meitei community from their villages.
The protest, organized by Committee on Protection and Restoration of Affected Villages by Ethnic Conflict Under Khundrakpam Assembly Constituency, condemned SoO militants and called on the government to control those militants under the Suspension of Operation.
Speaking on the sideline of the protest, convenor of the organizing committee, Okram Saratchandra Meitei said most of the villagers who were displaced are farmers who will not be able to cultivate their fields this year if the situation continues.
He urged the government and the concerned authorities to take necessary steps so that the displaced villagers could start their farming with the coming of the monsoon season.
He said that the central paramilitary forces who are deployed for the protection of the villagers at periphery areas adjoining the Kuki communities are not firing a single bullet though suspected Kuki SoO militants are attacking the villagers with their sophisticated weapons.
Stating that 10 MLAs have demanded for a separate administration inside the state, he questioned why the remaining MLAs are silent.
He also said that people strongly condemned the statement of executive director of Human Rights Alerts, Babloo Loitongbam, who allegedly blamed Arambai Tengol and Meitei Leepun for the crisis in an interview.
He urged the authorities concerned to provide guns to the villagers if the government failed to protect the villagers.
The protestors held a banner which read, “If government cannot protect the Meitei villages, give us arms to protect our villages from Kuki Militants; Stop using SoO Kuki Militants to divide Manipur; stop victimization of Meitei; no holemand for Kuki Militants and Kuki refugees and Government of India is responsible for ethnic clash and unrest in Manipur”.
They also held placards which read, “No separate administration in Manipur; Manipurgi Saktam Kaiba Yaroi; Government of India should control SoO militants immediately; Kuki Militant sing laksingadabani; Down with NARCO TERRORISM; Meitei/Meetei ST da chan gadbani and Nishagi mayokta jati khudingmakna lepkadabnni”.