Last Updated on May 24, 2023 by SPN Editor
Imphal/May 24, 2023 (SPN) | Kuki militants have intruded the foothills and seized Meitei Village in the Valley. They have destroyed several houses and occupied over 150 acres of fertile paddy fields in the Ekou and Yengkhuman villages around the Dolaithabi area in Imphal East.
Despite peace talks concluded among the villages in the area, incidents of burning Meitei houses continue in the Dolaithabi areas.
In the aftermath of the violent clashes that began on May 3, the loss of lives and properties has been devastating. Meiteis residing in the Hill districts of Moreh, Churachandpur, and Kangpokpi have suffered as their houses and properties were burnt and vandalized. Similarly, Kukis residing in the Valley also faced backlash from the violence.
On Saturday, the villagers of Dolaithabi, Ekou, and Yengkhuman appealed to the government and the relevant authorities to take action and remove the Kuki militants operating under the Suspension of Operations (SoO) agreement.
These militants are alleged to have taken control of Meitei villages in the area. The villagers expressed their concern and frustration, stating that instead of advising the Meitei community to control their anger, the focus should be on addressing the presence of these militants and restoring peace to the affected villages.
A resident of Litanpokpi, Thounaojam Bipin, informed the media that Kuki militants ransacked the Ekou and Yengkhumang villages, which have over 250 houses. After terrorizing the Meitei village, Kuki militants have taken control of approximately 150 acres of paddy fields in the area.
Additionally, the Kuki militants have intruded into Koupak village, where both Nepali and Meitei communities reside. They have now seized control of this village as well.
As of now, no action has been taken by the central paramilitary forces or state forces to remove the Kuki militants who have occupied the Meitei village and paddy lands. This situation has persisted since the displacement of the Meitei people from their own villages due to the clashes.
The lack of intervention by the authorities has raised concerns among the affected communities, as their safety and the recovery of their lands remain unresolved.
Meanwhile, Kukis have conveyed their unanimous stance of “Solution first, Peace next” to the Central Government during a sit-in protest held at Keithelmanbi Military Colony in Champhai sub-division of Kangpokpi district.
The Kuki protesters demanded that the solution should be based on the political talks between the United People’s Front (UPF), the Kuki National Organization (KNO), and the Governments of India and Manipur.
They clearly asserted that they would not engage in any peace process initiated by the government without first addressing their problems and finding a solution.
The spokesperson of the Committee on Tribals Unity (COTU), Sadar Hills, K Sitlhou, expressed their dissatisfaction, stating, “When our people are truly suffering and their cries remain unheard, and when there is significant damage and loss of lives, why do the government representatives only come to us propagating peace?”