Union minister Rajnath Singh on Friday said the government was ready to hold a discussion on the violence in Manipur in Parliament, but accused the Opposition of not being serious about it.
“I am seeing that some political parties are creating a situation so that no discussion on Manipur can take place,” Singh said, according to The Indian Express. “...Keeping the seriousness of the Manipur incident in mind, I repeat there should be a discussion [in Parliament]. I urge that the Opposition also take it seriously.”
Both Houses of Parliament were adjourned for a second day in a row on Friday over the Manipur violence. While Opposition parties have sought a longer discussion under Rule 267 on the violence in Manipur, the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Central government has agreed to a short-duration discussion.
Under Rule 267 of the Rajya Sabha Rules, an MP can give a notice seeking to suspend the pre-decided agenda of the House in order to hold a discussion on a subject of importance.
The Opposition alleged that none of its notices under Rule 267 regarding Manipur were being taken up by the chairperson, The Indian Express reported.
Manipur has been witnessing ethnic clashes between the Kuki and the majority Meitei communities since May 3. Widespread incidents of violence and arson continue to deepen the crisis in the state. Over 140 people have been killed and nearly 60,000 have been forced to flee their homes.
On July 19, a video emerged of two Kuki women being paraded naked in the state’s Kangkopi district, leading to widespread outrage.
Three women, including the two who were seen in the video, were sexually assaulted in B Phainom village of Kangpokpi district on May 4, a day after clashes erupted between Meitei and Kuki communities. One of the women was “brutally gang-raped”, according to a police complaint.
On Friday, Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge said that he had raised the subject of the video in Parliament but was not given a chance to speak, reported ANI.
“Government should discuss this issue and we demand Prime Minister Narendra Modi to release a statement,” he said. “PM [Modi] made a statement outside the House, which he should have done inside the House.”