TODAY -

Ensuring rule of law matters more than ever
- The People's Chronicle Editorial :: October 31, 2023 -



AMIDST the prevailing unsettling situation in the northeastern Indian state of Manipur which has been roiled by an unprecedented communal conflict between the Meitei/Meetei and Kuki-Chin communities since May 3 last, emergence of a statement purportedly issued by World Kuki-Zo Intellectual Council (WKZIC) has created quite a stir.

The statement issued on October 24, 2013 and signed by information and publicity secretary of WKZIC alerted of an impending war and called for stocking up sufficient arms and ammunition, bombs, etc.

Written in a local dialect of Kuki-Chin people, the content of the statement when translated in English says, "Amongst our nation (Kuki), the KNO and UPF, who have been in talks with the Home Ministry of the Indian government, along with the 8 MLAs and 2 Ministers, had already finished and done their role and part in the demand for Separate Administration (UT).

The matter is now with the Home Ministry, and therefore, our duty is upheld in our prayer for granting of our demand during the winter parliament session, 2023.

The accusations by the public that both the KNO and UPF are under SoO with the Central government and therefore have remained silent shall be stopped as the two SoO groups have already finished their part.

Now, it requires that the ITLF Defense Wing, Zo United, COTU Defense, and the 04 (Four) Inpi work sincerely.

During this November, before the harvesting session, we will face another war; thus, arms and ammunition, bombs, etc. should be in sufficient stock.

Youth volunteers will be the ones going to face the war on the frontlines.

Our national army (UGs) shall join at our back only in critical situations.

The reason being, the Kuki national army (UGs) will not have free access any more (due to the SoO agreement).

Our national volunteers shall be equipped with the best arms; if required, ammunition shall be supplied limitlessly. Let's not forget we are at war".

Consequent to the emergence of this disturbing statement which has gone viral on social media, WKZIC came up with a clarification saying that the statement was fake and it was a foul play by some mischievous individuals to malign the image of the Council.

In the clarification made by its director of Department of Public Relations, WKZIC made it clear that it always issued press releases only in English and uploaded on its official Twitter account and the fact that the statement in question was written in local dialect and not uploaded on its official action is the "indisputable testimony" that the it was fake.

However, it seems that this clarification from WKZIC has not been able to dispel the apprehension of the people.

Even Youth of Manipur (YOM) has now raised question on the silence of the government over the issue, and asked why the government and its law enforcement agencies are making it a point to ensure the rule of laws only in the valley area and doing nothing to enforce the same in the hills.

Leaving aside the issue of whether one should or should not be alarmed by the purported fake statement or be contended with the subsequent clarification of WKZIC, the fact remains that the government needs to ensure adherence to the principles of supremacy of laws by all.

In this age of advanced information technology, it should not be so hard for the government and its agencies to track down the miscreants who are misusing the social media platform to vitiate the already tense situation.

When it could do the same even for passing an unfavourable comment on the Chief Minister, what is stopping it from doing the same when fake information which could cause unrest in the society are being floated freely and making it increasingly difficult to disambiguate truth from falsehood.

As they say, action speaks louder than words, the government needs to act with integrity and ensure law of rule both in the hills and the valley, if it wants to regain the lost trust of the people.



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