The Manipur government has instructed officials of five districts to “politely turn away” people people from Myanmar trying to seek refuge in the state, amid the military’s crackdown on anti-coup protests in the country, NorthEast Now reported on Sunday.
Security forces in Myanmar killed more than a 100 people on Saturday, in one of the bloodiest days of the agitation against the military’s takeover of the country. The violence has triggered outrage across the world.
Meanwhile, in a letter dated March 26, the Manipur Home Department directed the officials of Chandel, Tengnoupal, Kamjong, Ukhrul and Churachandpur districts not to open camps to provide food and shelter to people fleeing the violence, according to NorthEast Now.
“The Civil Society Organisations also should not be allowed to open any camps to provide shelter/food,” Manipur Special Secretary (Home) H Gyan Prakash added in the letter. “Aadhar enrolment should be stopped immediately and Aadhar enrolment kits taken into safe custody.”
However, the official said that the authorities may provide medical attention to the people seeking refuge, in case of serious injuries.
The Manipur government also directed the district officials to submit a report on the action taken by them based on the order by March 30.
Mizoram, Manipur’s neighbouring state, on the other hand, has shown willingness to help people from Myanmar. Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga had said last week that it was his government’s duty to provide food and shelter to people from Myanmar.
The chief minister, however, added that his government had “no say” in international affairs and the matter of refugees rested with the Centre. He urged the Centre to provide political asylum to Myanmar citizens.
More than a 1,000 Myanmar nationals are reported to have entered Mizoram so far, according to IANS.
On February 1, the military in Myanmar took control of the country and detained State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and other senior figures from the ruling National League for Democracy.
This happened after Suu Kyi victory’s in the national elections in November, with the military-backed Union Solidarity and Development Party faring poorly in its key strongholds. The military levelled accusations of fraud and refused to accept election results.
Protests against the coup broke out across the Myanmar. The military tried to control the intensifying agitation with firing, internet cuts and curfews.