TODAY -

Beyond the control of Imphal :: Delhi : A mere spectator
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: June 11, 2024 -



It should be more than obvious.

Everything has gone beyond the control of Imphal, its hands tied with everything that Delhi has been able to whip out of its closet.

The confusion over the command structure,
the extent of the free hand given to the para-military forces particularly the Assam Rifles while dealing with the situation,
the earlier instruction or suggestion of Union Home Minister Amit Shah to Chief Minister N Biren Singh to take care of the valley while he (Shah) would look after the hills,
the buffer zones which have been drawn up across the length and breadth of the State reducing the existence of the Meiteis to a state of surviving in a small pond surrounded by sharks all around,
the unstated, unclear and confusing status of the Suspension of Operation pact,
all seem to be designs drawn up to reduce the Meitei folks to sitting ducks in their own homes.

What else can explain the continued silence of the Prime Minister on a clash that has dragged on for more than one year ?

Today it is Jiribam burning.

Tomorrow it could be any place but one point that can be said with a degree of certainty is, the indifference of the Prime Minister and the different agenda drawn up to shackle the Meitei folks will continue.

Geo-politics is one reason that can easily be discerned and central to this politics is obviously the need to keep the growing clout of China under check, especially as New Delhi continues to Look and Act further East with a policy to boot.

The volatile situation in Myanmar has only made things worse and what has made things all the more unacceptable is the easily discernible point that Manipur has been pushed to the Centre of the big game east, so that the clout of Delhi as a major player in South East Asia will not be affected.

More than obvious that this is the primary reason why the Suspension of Operation pact was signed in the first place.

The SoO serves many purpose and obvious that the most visible is the intent of Delhi to neutralise the Naga and Manipur armed movement in the region, by using the SoO groups in a proxy war with the indigenous folks of the land.

The threat perception posed by the Kukis was realised much earlier by the Nagas and the Kuki-Naga clash of the early 1990s should be read and understood along this line.

It is much, much later that the Meiteis opened their eyes to let reality sink in and the fruits that one sees today are the blatant moves made to lay claim over places as sacred as Mount Thangjing and Mount Koubru.

Recall how Mount Thangjing was found christened as Mount Thangting.

The pogrom is unmistakable.

Look at the pattern in which the venue of conflict keeps changing ever since Manipur went up in flames on May 3, 2023.

Sugnu, Moreh and now Jiribam.

Places which are of strategic importance to the Kuki militants and the importance that is attached to Jiribam can be easily discerned from the fact that after killing a man, setting on fire more than 72 houses of the Meiteis and displacing over 200 people, the target was an advance security team sent ahead of the Chief Ministerís proposed visit to the Western Gate of Manipur.

Moreover Jiribam is geographically close to Mizoram, a place where the Kuki militants can easily cross across and blend themselves in with the local population and escape detection.

One driver of the advance security team of the Chief Minister was injured and this should say so many things.

For one the Kuki militants are in possession of heavy guns with limitless ammunition.

A more than clear signal that they are ready to take on the State forces and one wonders who could be backing them with the needed logistics.

Moreover how did the Kuki militants come to know that an advance security team was coming to Jiribam ?

Conspiracy theories are sure to abound, given the tense situation and this should raise the question of why conspiracy theories should arise in the first place.

Delhi would need to spell out its stand clearly.

First clear the confusion and spell out the unsaid but obvious point in criss crossing the length and breadth of Manipur with buffer zones.

Who is the Chairperson of the Unified Command ?

Is the Security Advisor living up to the task that was assigned to him and what is his position vis-a-vis the State Government ?

Is his role something more than an advisory position ?

Taking the people and the place for granted is what can be seen in bold in the indifference of Delhi.



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