TODAY -

War Like Situation Continues
- Various Naga Groups -

Tahamzam: Mao 11, 2010



TEN DAYS SIEGE OF MAO GATE AREA BY THE MANIPUR STATE ARMED FORCES WAR LIKE SITUATION CONTINUES

On the 29th of April, 2010, the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, advised the Manipur, Nagaland and West Bengal State Government to arrange foolproof security for Th. Muivah, the Ato Kilonser of the GPRN, who would be visiting his native village, Somdal between 2nd to 9th May, 2010. The Naga people in the villages and townships, along the proposed route of his home visit journey started gearing up to welcome Mr Muivah.

On the 1st May, 2010, hundreds of Manipur State police and other armed forces were then deployed at Mao gate, the border town between Manipur and Nagaland. It was first given out that they were being sent there for security coverage of Mr Muivah's visit. The Manipur state armed forces were under the commands of V. ZATHANG, IPS, IG (Law & Order) III; KAILUN, IPS, SP, Imphal West District; ANGAM KAMEI, IPS, ADDL. SP, Imphal East; JAMES MANAO, MPS, ADDL SP, Kangpokpi; K. JAYANTA, MPS, SP, Bishnupur District; L. HAOKIP, IPS, DSP, Bishnupur; MD. ISAK, MPS, ADDL. SP, Bishnupur; IBOMACHA, MPS, DSP, Bishnupur and several other officers in the rank of Inspectors and sub-inspectors. Besides the escort contingents of the officers, the composition of the Manipur Armed forces includes (a) IRB around 200 nos (b) Manipur Police Commandos 200 + nos; (c) Manipur Rifles 24 nos; (d) over 400 nos of fresh recruit under Manipur Police. The forces were heavily armed with rocket launchers, grenades & 2inch motor launchers, tear gas launchers, AK rifles, INSAS, LMGs etc. Armoured cars, fire-brigade trucks and water cannons were also positioned in the area.

On 1st May 2010, the Government of Manipur in its cabinet decision declared that Mr. Th. Muivah, Hon'ble Ato Kilonser, GPRN will not be allowed to visit his village. On 2nd May, 2010, prohibitory orders under section 144 Cr.P.C were issued and made effective from 5.00 pm along all areas in the stipulated route of Muivah's visit plan. All vehicles entering National Highway 39 to Mao Gate from Nagaland was blocked by placing armoured cars in the middle of the road. The real purpose for deployment of the hundreds of Manipur State police and other armed forces at Mao gate, then became clear. Soon the traditional welcome gates erected by the Nagas to welcome Mr Muivah were dismantled against the explicit wish of the people. The postures, language and demeanour of the Manipur armed forces towards the local populace became threatening and abusive. An atmosphere of fear was thus created in the area. On the evening of 5th May, 2010 at 6.30 P.M. one Mr Ashihrii Puni, of Song Song village, a Mao tribal, aged 52 years was brutally assaulted without any reason by the Indian Reserve Battalion (IRB), Manipur.

Therefore on the 6th of May, the general public of the area organized a peaceful procession on the National Highway 39 to protest against the savage act of the IRB and also to continue their protest against the ban on Mr Muivah's visit. While the procession was being taken out, the Manipur State armed forces, without any warnings, started firing tear gas and stick bombs on the innocent public directly using them as lethal missiles, which claimed the first casualties of about ten women. Soon after, they started firing randomly on the protestors and in the process 2 (two) male students were shot dead and more than 80 persons, mainly women, sustained grievous bullet wounds and related injuries. The brutal onslaught by the heavily armed Manipur forces caused the public to disperse, but the barraging of the Mao Gate area with tear Gas and mock bombs continued for hours together. The Manipur armed forces also damaged many vehicles parked on the National Highway, kicked open doors of houses, entered and picked up menfolks and herded them away to their camp while assaulting them with blows and kicks.

This led to widespread fear and the villagers in Mao gate area fled to neihbouring villages and towns. In the absence of the villagers, the Manipur security forces indulged in ransacking houses, looting and destruction of houses and properties. The lootings included vegetables, huge amount of cash, live chickens, potatoes, cartoons of eggs, bread & butter, guitar etc. The rampage resulted in the damage of over 12 motor vehicles of various makes amounting to loss of several lacs of rupees.

The security forces stationed in Mao have already barb-wired (electrified) half of the village away and forced residents to leave the area. Residents have been told not to come within 200 feet of the wires or "face the consequence". The Manipur state security forces have cut the main pipeline which supplies water to the cluster of 9 villages around Mao Gate

Presently, there are about two thousand internally displaced people, mostly women and children who have taken refuge in neighbouring villages in Nagaland and other nearby villages and towns. In Kisama heritage village, under Kohima District, Nagaland alone, there are 438 villagers taking shelter.

On the same day of the violent repression, the Naga frontal organisations on behalf of the Naga people sent a memorandum to the Hon'ble Prime Minister of India and the Hon'ble Union Home Minister, informing them of the war-like situation prevailing at Mao area. The said memorandum urged for immediate intervention and demanded the followings - : A) Institute a judicial enquiry into the incident. B) Immediate withdrawal of 144 CRPC which has been imposed to prevent the entry of Mr Th. Muivah, Ato Kilonser, GPRN. C) Immediate withdrawal of IRB and Police Commandos from Naga areas. D) Allow the entry and ensure the safe passage of Mr. Th. Muivah, Ato Kilonser to his native village and to peacefully complete his peace tour. The memorandum indicated that the dead bodies of the murdered students would be received so long as the stipulated demands were not fulfilled.

It is with great surprise that the Senapati District administration has not responded in any manner to address the grievances of the people inspite of several representations by the people and chose to remain mute spectators. The Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police of the district seem to have been totally abdicated their duties and responsibilities while launching the offensive to prevent the entry of Mr. Th. Muivah to his native home. In any situation of such serious proportion, the representative of a popular Govt. meets the effected people. But in the instant case, except for the Chief Secretary, who made a touch and go visit to Tadubi to take an assessment of the situation on the 9th May, 2010, no representative of the State Government has come to the area. It is definitely a war zone surely the State government is clear who their enemies are at this defining moments.

Due to the intervention by the Naga Mothers' Association and other concerned citizens in the interest of the bereaved families and for hygienic reasons, the Naga people after waiting for six days have decided to collect the two dead bodies and give a respectful Naga customary burial to the two noble martyrs on 12th May, 2010.

We are concerned that things will worsen if the Government of India does not intervene immediately to diffuse the volatile situation, which has been created by the Manipur Armed Forces and their most brutal repression.

Sd/-
(SAMSON REMEI)
President
United Naga Council

(GRACE SHATSANG)
President
Naga Women's Union, Manipur

(DAVID CHORO)
President
All Naga Students' Association Manipur

(PHAMHRING SENGUL)
Convenor
All Naga Students' Association Manipur


This information is sent to e-pao.net by Naga International Support Center (NISC). The sender can be contacted at nisc(at)nagalim(dot)nl
This PR was webcasted on May 14th 2010.


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