TODAY -

Khwairamband shuts amid protest
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, September 02 2023: Condemning in the strongest terms the acts of terror unleashed by Kuki militants at Naranseina, Thamnapokpi and other adjoining areas in Bishnupur district which inflicted casualties upon the Meitei people, and showing solidarity to all the victims, women vendors of Khwairamband Keithel suspended their daily activities and staged a protest demonstration today.

Massive protests were also held across the valley districts today demanding withdrawal of Assam Rifles from Manipur.

All business establishments and shops remained closed during the protest.



Khwairamband shuts amid protest
Khwairamband shuts amid protest


Womenfolk staged protest demonstrations in every locality including Uripok-Kangchup Road, Sagolband- Jiribam Road, Wahengbam Leikai to Keishampat, Tiddim Road, Mayai Lambi, Konung Mamang to Sagolmang, Singjamei to Heirangoithong, Yaiskul to Singjamei, Singjamei Bazar to Lilong, Singjamei-Kongba Road, Singjamei Wangma Pebiya Pandit Leikai, Tinsid Road, Khurai to Yaingangpokpi, Khoyathong-Thangmeiband Road, Lamlong to Khundrakpam road, Sangakpham to Koirengei and others.

Apart from Khwairamband Keithel, many other important market places like Singjamei, Kwakeithel, Konung Mamang, Lamlong, Tera, Lamphel, Kongba, Uripok etc too remained shut.

Huirem Bino, a vendor of Khwairamband Keithel, decried that Kuki militants have been continuously attacking Meitei people at fringe and peripheral areas in spite of the assurances of both the Central Government and the State Government that the violence would be de-escalated.

Notwithstanding the Government's assurance to provide security in paddy cultivation, one farmer was shot and grievously injured by Kuki militants at Naranseina a few days back, she pointed out.

She said that women vendors of Khwairamband decided to cease their daily activities for today in solidarity to the suffering masses.

Bino urged the Government to see that the violence ends at the earliest and peace is restored in the State.

Extending support to the Khwairamband women vendors' protest, sit-ins were staged at different places.

Placards and banners insrcibed with words which read as "No separate administration in Manipur", "Integrity of Manipur cannot be compromised", "We condemn Assam Rifles' partiality and discrimination", "Withdraw Assam Rifles from Manipur", "Implement NRC in Manipur", "Drive out Kuki narco-terrorists from Manipur", "Long live Manipur" etc were put up at the protest sites.

On the other hand, the Peace and Integrity Committee Kyamgei (PICK) and All Kyamgei Nupi Chaokhat Thourang Lup also organised a mass sit-in protest at Kyamgei Pal Ahanbi.

On the sideline of the protest demonstration, All Kyamgei Nupi Chaokhat Thourang Lup general secretary A Ibeyaima said the Kyamgei peace committee and the Lup are sharing the pain and the grief of the bereaved families of the heroes who have been killed by Kuki militants.

The people of the State want peace to return to Manipur, she said, urging the Government to reconvene a normal Assembly session and take concrete resolutions to bring peace and protect Manipur's integrity.

A large number of womenfolk staged a similar protest demonstration at Senjam Chirang demanding withdrawal of Assam Rifles from Manipur.

Speaking to media persons at the protest site, one Meira Paibi activist remarked that deployment of Assam Rifles do not serve any purpose with respect to the ongoing violence.

Assam Rifles could not stop Kuki militants from attacking civilians repeatedly and burning down Meitei houses even though these attacks took place right under their nose.

On the other hand, there have been incidents of Assam Rifles obstructing State security forces for discharging their duties which sometimes resulted in tense face-off, she said.

The father (ex-serviceman) of late Saikhom Sanjit Kumar of Uripok Achom Leikai who was killed in a gun fight with Kuki militants had expressed strong suspicion that the bullet which hit his son belonged to the Assam Rifles, she reminded.

They (Assam Rifles) even served legal notice to a Meitei for speaking the truth regarding the violent crisis.

The legal notice has now evoked widespread protest across the State, said the Meira Paibi activist.

It was a matter of grave concern that the much-awaited State Assembly session held on August 29 ended within minutes without discussing any aspect of the prolonged violent crisis besieging the State.

She then urged Chief Minister N Biren to understand the suffering of the masses, hold an Assembly session and adopt concrete resolutions to end the violence and protect from Manipur.


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