UNLF under the leadership of Chairman Kh Pambei feels the proposed process may be termed as “peace talk” and the party’s general secretary Ch Thanil says it will soon be engaged with Government of India authorities.
United National Liberation Front (UNLF) under the leadership of Chairman Kh Pambei has decided to sign a mutual ceasefire agreement with the Government of India. The party says it is preparing for a negotiated settlement to the protracted armed struggle to regain Manipur’s lost sovereignty.
The Party’s general secretary Ch Thanil on Friday said that the outfit will soon sign a ceasefire and hold talks with the Government of India. Speaking on the occasion of UNLF’s 59th Anniversary at the newly inaugurated camp in Kakching Khunou area on November 24, Ch Thanil said the proposed process may be termed as “peace talk” and the UNLF will soon be engaged with Government of India authorities.
Ch Thanil allayed “doubts” over the minds of the public in Manipur by asserting that — what the UNLF will be embarking upon will NOT be a “surrender” as being speculated by unscrupulous individuals. He said it will be a process towards a negotiated political settlement. Ch Thanil mentioned that the move towards ceasefire and a political settlement were reached after the leadership pondered over “feelers” from New Delhi.
The general secretary of the party states that after an understanding was reached between authorities representing the Government of India and UNLF under the leadership of Chairman Kh Pambei, the two sides decided not to act against each other. This is probably why central and state armed forces were not acting against them even as UNLF still remains a proscribed armed group.
Ch Thanil stated that while the group’s leadership was contemplating the process, Manipur was hit by the ongoing ethnic crisis, the clash between the Meiteis and the Chin-Kuki-Zo conglomerate. The general secretary however made it a point to recall that the founding fathers of the UNLF never based their movement on ethnic exclusivist ideas citing the example of how its first leadership comprised of eminent personalities drawn from major ethnic communities in Manipur.
It may be mentioned that UNLF’s first office bearers included – Kalalung Kamei (Naga) as President; Thankhopao Singsit (Khongsai) as Vice-President and Arambam Samarendra (Meitei) as the General Secretary. Ch Thanil stated that the political wisdom of the first leadership was impeccably sound with a clear vision for the future of Manipur. He also reminisced the clarity of thought as propounded by the founding general secretary of the UNLF, late Arambam Samarendra on the political situation of the Manipur after it was “annexed” by India.
Attended by key functionaries of the party, its armed units and thousands of supporters, the anniversary event turned out to be an occasion for public disclosure of the political intention of the UNLF led by Chairman Th Pambei. Pambei himself was not present at this venue during the anniversary celebration. However, the leadership under the central committee members were able to succinctly elaborate on the current situation unfolding in Manipur. Even as the anniversary celebration was underway, hundreds of people were seen walking towards the venue to attend the function. Along the dirt road, leading to the camp, there was a long serpentine line of vehicles caught in a traffic jam, all heading for the anniversary celebration. People continued to stream in till the time the observance of the anniversary was over in the afternoon. Many leaders representing CSOs also attended and spoke on the occasion.
A written statement was also issued on the 59th Anniversary on Friday, 24th November 2023: READ: MESSAGE TO THE PEOPLE ON THE OCCASION OF THE 59th ANNIVERSARY