TODAY -

Will maintain vigil, says UCM
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, June 23 2022: Even though the State Government has written to the Central Government to halt construction of fence along Manipur section of Indo-Myanmar border, the United Committee Manipur (UCM) has resolved to keep a strict vigil.

Speaking to media persons at their Lamphelpat office this afternoon, UCM president Joychandra Konthoujam said that they would resume different modes of protest and people's movement if the border fencing work is found going on when they go for field inspection.

Urging the authority concerned to carry on the border fencing work only after the boundary disputes are resolved and halt the border fencing work until an agreement is reached between India and Myanmar, the UCM submitted an ultimatum to the Chief Minister and Union Minister of State for External Affairs RK Ranjan to halt the fencing work by June 20, he said.

As the authorities did not pay any heed to the ultimatum, the UCM staged a protest demonstration in front of Kangla Fort on June 21 .

A similar protest demonstration was staged at Lamlong Keithel yesterday but one UCM volunteer and a woman journalist sustained injuries in police crackdown, Joychandra said.

While UCM volunteers and women vendors were preparing for another protest demonstration at Khwairamband today, a message was received from the Chief Minister's Office for a meeting.

As such, the protest demonstration was aborted, he said.

Conveying about their meeting with Chief Minister N Biren, the UCM president said that N Biren called both the BRTF and the Union Home Secretary on phone in front of the UCM representatives and asked them to halt the border fencing work.

At the instruction of the Chief Minister, Special Secretary (Home) H Gyan Prakash too asked the Union Home Secretary to halt construction of border fence along the 10 Kms stretch from Moreh to Kwatha (BP 79 to BP 81) .

Construction of border fence is being done by BRTF under MHA.

Saying that the whole length of the boundary line from BP 79 to BP 102 is fraught with disputes, Joychandra maintained that they would closely monitor what the State Government and the Central Government do next.

The UCM would make a direct assessment of the areas beyond BP 79 and send a fact finding report to both the State Government and the Central Government, he said.

The UCM would not accept any further loss of Manipur's territory on account of border fencing when all the people of the State are still aggrieved by the loss of Kabaw Valley to Myanmar.

The inability to resolve the boundary disputes only exposes weakness of the Government, Joychandra remarked.

To a query raised by media persons, the UCM president said that the border fencing work being executed by BRTF under MHA includes five major gates and 10 minor ones.

"We are not demanding demolition of the border fence already constructed.

We are only asking for suspension of the same work until the disputes around the boundary line are settled", he said.

However, BRTF would say that it is border fence only to claim again that it is security fence.

They are not disclosing the fact, Joychandra decried.

"We will not accept loss of any part of the State's territory on account of construction of border fence in the name of checking smuggling of drugs and illegal immigration", he asserted.


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