Twenty non-residents have been killed in militant attacks in Manipur since 2017, Chief Minister N Biren Singh told the state Assembly on Wednesday, The Indian Express reported.

Responding to questions raised by Congress MLA Surjakumar Okram during the Monsoon Session, the chief minister said that the figure was highest last year, when eight non-Manipuris were killed. One person was killed each in 2017, 2018 and 2019 and three non-locals were murdered in 2020. Till July 25 this year, six non-locals were killed, the chief minister said.

Singh, who became the Manipur chief minister for the second consecutive term in March, said that 40 non-locals were murdered under the Congress rule.

The Bharatiya Janata Party leader stressed that the state government was taking stringent steps to stop such killings, noting that most of the attacks happened during elections.

At a ceremony held later on Wednesday, Singh reiterated Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s promise that not a single bullet would be fired on those militants who want to return to their normal lives.

Twelve members of the Liberation Tigers of Tribals, including its chairperson, deputy chairperson and army chief, laid down their weapons before the chief minister.

Singh said no first information report would be filed against those who surrendered, unless it was related to a heinous crime, The Indian Express reported.