New Delhi: A delegation of ten opposition parties in Manipur met governor Anusuiya Uikey on Friday and said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi is the “only hope” to resolve the ongoing conflict in the state and urged her to facilitate a meeting with him.
Manipur has been in the grip of ethnic violence between the Kuki and Meitei communities since May 3 in which over 175 people have been killed and more than 60,000 displaced.
The opposition parties’ delegation included the Congress, Janata Dal United (JD(U)), Communist Party of India (CPI(M)), Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), All India Forward Bloc (AIFB), All India Trinamool Congress, Shiv Sena (Uddhav Thackeray), Aam Admi Party and the Revolutionary Socialist Party (RSP).
Joined the delegation of 10 like minded political parties leaders and met the Hon’ble Governor of Manipur and submitted a detailed memorandum for the early restoration of normalcy and peace in Manipur. @RajBhavManipur @AnusuiyaUikey @INCManipur @INCIndia pic.twitter.com/KFNSX6SHO9
— Gaikhangam (@Gaikhangam2) November 18, 2023
A copy of the letter submitted to Uikey, posted on X (formerly Twitter), showed 14 signatories including the Congress’ K. Meghachandra, former Manipur chief minister O. Ibobi Singh (Congress), CPM’s K. Santa Singh, JD(U)’s K. Loken Singh (JDU), CPI’s L. Sontinkumar Singh, NCP’s S. Iboyaima Singh and TMC’s T. Inaocha Singh.
In their memorandum, the opposition parties said that the conflict which is over six months old now has caused huge loss of lives, property and displacement of over 60,000 people belonging to both the communities. It said that the living conditions of the internally displaced people in relief camps is “inhuman and far from satisfaction.”
“There are instances of sporadic killing, firing and kidnapping of people including students, thereby leaving the people in great tension, uncertainty and hardships especially to those living on the periphery/borders between hills and valleys. The social and economic lives of all sections of the society have been uprooted.”
The parties said that the peace committee constituted by the Union government has not done “any visible work” to restore peace and harmony in the state.
“Considering the complexities of the conflict in the state, a viable solution to the conflict can only be brought about by the Union government. We consider the Hon’ble Prime Minister of the India is the only hope for bringing peace in the state.”
Modi who has not visited strife torn Manipur in the six months of the conflict has faced criticism from opposition parties for not speaking on the issue. On August 10, the second last day of the monsoon session of parliament, Modi broke his silence on the floor of the parliament about the ongoing violence in Manipur while replying to the no-confidence motion moved against his government. However, in his speech that lasted around 2 hours 20 mins, Modi spoke about the violence hit-state.
Last month Modi gave a miss to campaigning in election bound neighbouring Mizoram – the one state election where the prime minister did not go ahead of the polls.
The Modi government has also defended its BJP government in the state and claimed that chief minister N. Biren Singh is cooperating with the Union so there is no need to remove him from office.
After the meeting on Friday, the Raj Bhavan issued a statement and said that the governor had assured the delegation that “every possible step for initiating dialogue process will be taken up and she will pursue the Prime Minister for initiating talks with all political parties in the state,” reported The Telegraph.
Uikey also said to the the delegation that she “is in touch” with central leaders and had submitted reports about the unrest while seeking “steps to end it”.