TODAY -

Young expectant mom recalls terror flight from Moreh after May 3 mayhem
Narrating a woman survivor's tale of grit, courage
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, December 08 2023: With no solution at sight to the ongoing violence in Manipur, many still are anxious about their future and one among them is a young expectant mother from Moreh who has been taking refuge in Imphal since she was four months pregnant.

The stressed expectant mother Ningombam Diana (20) has been taking refuge at the relief camp set up exclusively for pregnant women at the youth hostel of Khuman Lampak.

She is now 10 months pregnant and is anxious about the future of her unborn child in a State so deeply divided based on ethnic lines.



Young expectant mom recalls terror flight from Moreh after May 3 mayhem
Young expectant mom recalls terror flight from Moreh after May 3 mayhem


Speaking to The Sangai Express, Diana said with a heavy heart that she at times regret being pregnant during this horrendous period.

Diana got married to Ningombam Jenner (21) from Moreh Ward no 7 Tural Wangma when she was just 18 and the couple has a son aged 2 years.

Saying that her family has eight people including her father and mother-in law and earn their livelihood by rearing poultry and pigs and planting vegetables before they fled from Moreh, Diana continued that their family got separated due to the violent conflict in Manipur.

She further said that other members of her family are taking refuge at Urup Arapti.

Recounting the horror of May 3, Diana said she feels depressed whenever she remembers how elders, children and people of all ages ran for their lives after her locality was attacked and burnt by Kukis.

Diana said that they heard about Kukis engaging in violent activities at Moreh Bazar at around 3.30 pm of May 3 .

Further stating that they hid inside their house at the initial stage of the aggression, the expectant mother recalled that the Meeteis at Moreh started running for their lives after the Kukis who wielded heavy objects and guns circled the Meetei localities and started kicking on the door of each house.

"We all ran for our lives helter skelter when the Kukis attacked us," she narrated.

Saying that she got injured in her breast after a LPG cylinder in a nearby house exploded, Diana said that she, along with some women and children rushed towards a particular boarding and hid there for a while despite the injury.

It was like a dream, a really bad and horrifying dream, Diana sighed.

Saying that some children started crying while they were hiding, she said that Kukis pelted stones and fired at the boarding after they heard the cry.

Further stating that they discreetly went to house after house to save themselves, Diana said that they were rescued by police at around 1.30 am of May 4 and taken to Moreh police station before shifting them to the Key Location Point (KLP) of Assam Rifles at Moreh at around 4.30 am.

"From KLP, we were shifted to the Army camp at Pallel," Diana said and added that they reached Imphal on the evening of May 12 .

Saying that she got separated from her family as she is pregnant, Diana said that she is satisfied with the health and other facilities being provided to pregnant women at Khuman Lampak relief camp.

Diana said that she, however, misses her family and the house at Moreh.

"We were happy with whatever we had," Diana said while adding that she wants to reunite with her family.

She appealed to the Government to begin the resettlement and rehabilitation process for them as soon as possible.

General secretary of BJP OBC Morcha who is also a volunteer at the relief camp Leitanthem Gopal said that the camp is being run by the State unit of the party to look after the expectant mothers who got displaced.

Saying that they are in constant touch with the Chief Medical Officers (CMOs) of different districts, he added that 46 pregnant women from Imphal East, 40 from Bishnupur, 23 from Kakching, 16 from Churachandpur, 11 from Imphal West, seven from Tengnoupal and two from Kangpokpi have so far taken refuge at the relief camp.

Currently, 14 pregnant women and 10 lactating mothers are staying at the relief camp while the figure of inmates who have checked out is 121, he informed.

The relief camp has 18 helpers/attendants, Gopal added.


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