TODAY -

Many call for ending SoO pact, internal conflict
Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal, March 01 2024: What action the government will initiate up against the 10 Kuki MLAs who opposed the resolution of the Assembly to the abrogate the SoO agreement signed with the Kuki militants, questioned Peace and Integrity Committee Kyamgei (PICK) convenor Ch Meghachandra on Friday.

Speaking to the media on the sidelines of a rally organised by PICK from Kakwa to Lilong Arapti along the NH 102 Imphal Moreh road, in collaboration with the local clubs and CSOs, he asked the government if actions will actually be taken against the 10 Kuki MLAs as they opposed the collective decision to abrogate the SoO accord with Kuki armed outfits.

He insisted that the public should be informed about the status of SoO which lapsed on February 29.He also commended selfless role of the village volunteers in defending the peripheral villages from Kuki militants' unabated onslaughts ever since the violence broke out on May 3 and hailed effective actions of state forces in Moreh.

The village volunteers and the state forces should forgive each other's mistakes, if any, and work together for the greater good of the people, he continued.

During the rally, the protesters raised slogans including 'we condemn disarmament of Arambai Tenggol and village volunteers', 'Join hands to defend the peripheral borders' and 'Make a decision in the assembly session to bring solution to the 10 month-long clash in the state', etc.

The protesters also held placards reading 'Leave AT and village volunteers alone' and 'End SoO accord with Kuki militants', etc.

Meanwhile, All Kyamgei Nupi Chaokhat Thourang Lup president M Sobita urged stakeholders concerned to pursue the demand for inclusion of Meetei/Meitei in the ST list during the assembly session.

She also cautioned that the womenfolk will launch intense agitations if the security forces do not leave the village volunteers alone.

Meanwhile, many organisations have urged village volunteers not to withdraw from their respective posts and the commando personnel to call off their 'arms down' protest and continue protecting the vulnerable Meetei villages from being attacked by armed Kuki militants.

They also exhorted all concerned to stop infighting at this crucial juncture.

Addressing a press conference jointly organised by Nupi Samaj, Tammi Chingmi and Echal at the office of Nupi Samaj at Lamphelpat on Friday, Nupi Samaj president Thokchom Ramani said that laying down arms by both police commandos and Arambat Tenggol amid Kuki militants waging war to destroy the state, is uncalled for.

She said that mothers of Manipur are disheartened due to the discord and urged both state forces and Arambai Tenggol to stop the infighting as both have been protecting the state from the aggression of Kuki militants since May 3 last year.

Pointing out failure to resolve the differences will expose vulnerabilities of the peripheral Meetei villages, she suggested bringing both parties to an understanding.

While terming the February 27 incident as unfortunate and avert recurrence of the same, Ramani advised the state forces to rethink their decision to lay down arms.

Chipping in Chingmi Tammi president Y Momon reminded that Arambai Tenggol has been shielding people of Manipur from the aggression of armed Kuki militants since the violence broke out on May 3 last year.

Moreover, state forces too took vital roles in protecting the people, she pointed out, while appealing to both the parties to reconsider their respective stand of laying down arms in the interest of the state and its people.

Similarly, Khwairamband Ima Keithel Joint Coordinating Committee for Peace convenor Yumnam Ibeyaima told media persons at Manipur Press Club, on Friday, that both the state forces and the village volunteers have been sacrificing their lives for protecting the integrity of Manipur.

Appealing not to repeat such infighting in the future, she urged to join hands and protect the land from the aggression of armed Kuki militants.

She also lauded the state government for adopting a resolution against extension of the SoO pact signed with Kuki armed outfits during the assembly session on Thursday.

Meanwhile, Meira paibis and villagers of Leitanpokpi staged a sit-in protest demanding village volunteers and commandos to continue protecting Meetei villages in Leitanpokpi area which faced intermittent attacks by armed Kuki militants since May 3 last year.

The protestors further demanded both the village volunteers and state police commandos to withdraw their decision to withdraw from their post and lay down arms by considering the plights of the people living in periphery areas.

In separate releases, Awang Sekmai Kanba Lup and Mayanglangjing Nupi Semgat Sagat Marup also exhorted to stop infighting between village volunteers and state forces.

They further urged to come to an understanding and continue to protect the land.


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