TODAY -

Not the time to keep silent : Deafening silence
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: December 06 2023 -



Silence is definitely not the better part of valour at this point of time.

Where is the Chief Minister?

Where is the Security Advisor to the Government of Manipur?

Where is the Council of Ministers?

The people who matter may have gone mum but this has not stopped the common folks from raising questions on the 13 people killed under questionable circumstances.

As soon as news of the bludgeoned and bullet riddled bodies of the 13 young men went viral on the social media, the office of the media, at least the office of The Sangai Express, has been flooded with calls inquiring about the incident and developments, if any.

Twenty four hours after reports of the bludgeoned bodies of the 13 young men went viral, inquiries about further developments continue to pour into the office of this newspaper.

And this is not something unexpected.

While killing and bloodshed is not something new to Manipur, especially after May 3, the news that 13 young men were killed in one single incident is something big, very big, and is way out of the ordinary and it is this extraordinary that the Government should take note of and respond accordingly.

With nothing official coming out so far, certain questions need to be answered.

Were the 13 men killed in a shoot out with another armed group or were they captured, tortured and later done to death?

If they were killed in a shoot out then what explains the other injuries found on the slain men?

And if they were captured, were they taken captive after a gun fight or were the victims unarmed?

If they were unarmed how did information of their presence there reach the ears of the people who killed them?

Or if they were armed, then were they captured after a shoot-out and who captured them?

If at all it was an encounter then why aren't there any report or indication of injuries or casualty on the other side?

These are some of the pressing questions doing the round and the silence of the Government or the silence of the top people in the Government has not helped matters at all and has instead created room big enough for conspiracy theories to do the round and in any such theory, truth is the first casualty and this cannot be healthy for the Government by any stretch of the imagination.

If the encounter theory is to be taken into account then which group is known to be active in the said area? From where have the guns used to kill the 13 men come?

The area where the incident took place is dominated by the Kukis and the Government should have been working on the question of whether armed outfits under the SoO pact were involved in the killing of the 13 young boys or not.

Much have been written about and much have been talked about the guns looted from the police armouries located across the valley districts and a gun house at Churachandpur, and while the guns in the valley seem to have been accounted for, no one in the Government seems to have questioned where the guns that are fired towards the valley and at the foothills have come from.

So many unanswered questions at the moment and the more and longer certain crucial questions are left hanging in the air, the Government's call for peace and normalcy will fall flat on its face.

For starters, the Chief Minister and the Security Advisor should break their silence and spell out what actually happened.

How did the mortal remains of the slain men bear body injuries?

Were they captured, tortured and later killed, as suspected by many?

More importantly who overpowered and captured them? If not and if they were killed in an encounter as many believed in the initial stage, from where did the other side get their guns? The Government should get down to the business of answering these questions, however, uncomfortable they may be for leaving answered questions can only promote conspiracy theories and it would not do the Government any good.



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