Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga on Tuesday said that the situation in Manipur seems to have worsened as he appealed for peace in the violence-hit state.
“When will it STOP?” asked Zoramthanga in a long Twitter post.
Over 130 people have been killed and nearly 60,000 have been forced to flee their homes in the ethnic clashes between Kukis and Meitis since May 3 when the violence first erupted. Widespread incidents of violence and arson continue to deepen the crisis in the state.
Several Opposition parties have criticised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party governments at the Centre and the state for failing to end the violence. On Monday, the Supreme Court had directed the Manipur government to submit an updated status report on the ethnic clashes.
In his tweet, Zoramthanga said that 62 days have passed but “nothing seems to have changed”.
“Many lives have been lost, bloodshed all over, physical torture and the victims are looking for refuge wherever possible,” he said. “With no iota of doubt, those victims are my kin and kin, my own blood and should we quieten the situation by just being silent? I don’t think so!”
The chief minister said that the violence has led to about 12,000 Internally Displaced Persons, or IDPs, from Manipur to seek refuge in Mizoram.
“Refugees and/or IDPs from Manipur, Myanmar and Bangladesh have risen to over 50,000,” he added. ‘I wish and pray that the Central government on humanitarian ground lend us an immediate helping hand.”
Zoramthanga had requested a relief package of Rs 10 crore from the Centre in May, reported NDTV. But the Centre has not provided any funds or humanitarian aid to the state, according to Mizoram Home Secretary H Lalengmawia.
Because of this, Lalengmawia told ZoramChronicle, an Aizwal-based news portal, that the state has no option left but to seek donations from public to support the refugees from Manipur.
The Mizoram government is planning to initially approach ministers, legislators and senior officials for contribution, according to the news portal.
Kuki spokesperson’s house set on fire
Kuki National Organisation spokesperson Seilen Haokip’s house in Manipur’s Churachandpur was set on fire on Monday, The Indian Express reported.
The incident comes a day after Haokip’s organisation and the United People’s Front announced that a two-month blockade on National Highway 2 in Kangpokpi district will be lifted.
National Highway 2 connects Imphal with Dimapur in Nagaland. It is a crucial link and had been blocked since the violence broke out in Manipur on May 3.
In a joint statement, the two organisations said that the decision “was taken in view of Union Minister Amit Shah’s deep concern to restore peace and harmony in the state and alleviate the plight of people in general”.
Haokip was amongst the two signatories of the statement, along with United People’s Front spokesperson Aaron Kipgen, according to The Indian Express.
- Manipur CM Biren Singh has spat with Kuki users on Twitter, then deletes messages
- Why Biren Singh stays as Manipur chief minister despite even BJP leaders asking for his ouster