The Bangladeshi Manipuri community pointed out that it is the bounden duty of the Government of India to deter “ethnicization and violence” while delivering its obligations to protect the citizens of Manipur from external aggressions and internal disturbances.
In the wake of the present ethnic violence and tension in Manipur, Bangladeshi Manipuri Community has sought the intervention of Indian Mission, Dhaka on halting ethnic violence and safeguarding civil lives, public property and age-old integrity of Manipur.
In a memorandum submitted to the High Commissioner, Indian Mission, Dhaka, Bangladeshi Manipuri community said that the distinct history of Manipur is testified by its established influence in Asiatic Kingdoms and International treaty relations with the Avas, the Ahoms and the British.
The community reminded that the erstwhile Kingdom/state of Manipur evolved to enact its own modern democratic Constitution on July 26, 1947. The Democratic and secular nature of its Policy was best exemplified by the Manipur State Constitution Act 1947 as it was procedurally enacted through a Constituent Assembly that consisted of the Nagas and Kukis, in addition to the Meetei Pangal representatives.
The body polity was marked by inclusivity as the first Speaker of the Constitutional Government of Manipur – TC Tiankham was a Kuki, the first Education Minister — Bob Khating – was a Naga. Md. Allimuddin, a Meetei Pangal was also a cabinet minister in the Pre-merger Government of Manipur, reminded the memorandum.
The memorandum said that contrary to Manipur’s long cherished collective conscience, “the propagandist elites belonging to the Chin-Kuki-Mizo-Zomi group has been found indulging ethno-centric exclusive campaigns and thus the present tension in Manipur is neither a religious nor a tribal non-tribal issue. “Rather it stems from the resurrection of a Greater Pan-ethno Kuki politics that can only thrive by violently polarizing ethnicities in the Northeastern India and Myanmar (Burma) borderlands”, said the Bangladeshi Manipuri community memorandum.
“To arouse ethnic polarity, the self-contradicting narratives of being a free moving nomadic tribe, on one hand, and having a shared Kinship, on the other hand, is invoked to draw an ethnic cartography and a Greater Homeland Zale’n-gam across the entire borderlands of South Asia and Southeast Asia”, mentioned the memorandum. It was also alleged that the involvement of Kuki miscreants in the Tribal Solidarity Rally organized by All Tribal Students Union, Manipur (ATSUM).
The memorandum said that the Government of India must note the fact that Zale’n-gam project is to have a long-term ramification on regional peace. “The project Zale’n-gam is an over ambitious project of the Kukis to forcefully integrate regions across the Northeast of India” said the memorandum. The May 3 violence was “pre-meditated” and designed to arouse Kuki ethno aspiration across the region”, alleged the Bangladeshi Manipuri community.
“Moreover, the unnatural growth of Kuki population in Manipur from 1% in 1901 to 29% in 2022 explains the enormity of the influx of new Kukis into Manipur which has made indigenous communities insecure. Another alarming reality is the exponential growth in areas under poppy cultivation in Manipur. The reported cultivation of poppy is not less than 6742 acres (2021) in the hill districts of Manipur in close proximity to the Golden Triangle and it makes the region vulnerable to Narco-Terror network”, said the memorandum.
The memorandum also pointed out that the Government of Manipur’s stand against poppy cultivation in the hills and its action against settlement in reserved and protected forests have been interpreted as “ethnocentric drive”. The failure to join the drive against poppy cultivation and deforestation by some ethnocentric Kuki elites had disgruntled the public, said the Bangladeshi Manipiuri community.
The Bangladeshi Manipuri community said that it is the bounden duty of the Government of India to deter “ethnicization and violence” while delivering its obligations to protect the citizens of Manipur from external aggressions and internal disturbances.