Without any further delay all the fraternal communities and stakeholders need to come forward to restore peace in the state.
- Youths and Social Media users need to act responsibly so that no unverified, fake news, motivated and one-sided narratives are circulated.
- Similarly, we also appeal to the International, National and Regional Media to refrain from publishing sensitive news materials that can directly or indirectly flare up the present tension. That the Press Council of India’s Ethical Conduct norms for journalism be duly followed to save Manipur from the ongoing crisis.
- Any involvement of Kuki armed cadres who are under the Tripartite Suspension of Operation (SoO) in a civil protest, as it was witnessed in the Tribal Solidarity Rally on May 3, 2023 is to be seen as a violation of Constitutional obligations and International Humanitarian Laws. It is well known that armed parties to any conflict must distinguish between Civilian and Armed targets. Media fraternity and international community must intervene on such violations for the protection of the common people so the peace and tranquility returns on the region.
- A proper diagnosis of the present situation in Manipur is important for stopping any built-up of ethnic-tension. Thus, the identification of the core issues is important.
- The time has come for all the correct-thinking citizens to stop the proliferation of drug economy in the state of Manipur.
- The rise of drug cartels in the region is well documented by the United Nations. The exponential growth in drug businesses and poppy plantations in Manipur should have become one of the most important concerns of all irrespective of which ethnic group one belongs to.
- The evident protection of poppy plantation by some Narco Terror groups in the hills of Manipur who are also suspected to be part of the Tripartite Suspension of Operation is a matter of serious concern. We, the general population, are apprehensive over Manipur’s future as it is increasingly engulfed in the Global Narco The present ethnic tension cannot be seen in isolation from the geopolitics that is played out in the region. An intensified and prolonged inter-ethnic tension in Manipur and the region would unnecessarily make the whole Northeast India a flashpoint for international military built up.
- In the recent years, Manipur has been identified as one of the highest poppy cultivated places in the world. Before Manipur is wholly jostled by the Golden Triangle, there is an immediate need for containing the robust drug economy. In all likelihood, the drug cartels are sure to try to acquire political power while polarizing ethnic communities in Manipur.
- The participation of many armed persons in the Tribal Solidarity Rally on May 3, organized by ATSUM particularly in Churachandpur District of Manipur should be thoroughly investigated. The participation of armed persons in what was claimed to be tribal ‘Peace’ Rally needs to be denounced by every correct–thinking tribal citizen for it was the main cause of threat to ethnic harmony.
- The Government of India needs to answer why there is so much of arms/firearms present in the civilian space in the Kuki areas of Manipur. Moreover, the sporadic armed attacks in the foothill villages of Manipur with the alleged involvement of Kuki armed militants and para-military forces needs to be probed by the Union Government.
(Issued by Khaidem Mani, former acting chairperson, Manipur Human Rights Commission. His press statement is on behalf of Concerned Citizens, Manipur)