Imphal/August 31, 2023 (SPN) | In a joint statement issued by the Thadou Students’ Association (TSA) based in various states, including Delhi, Bengaluru, Assam-Dima Hasao, Guwahati, and Mizoram, the Thadou tribe’s position on the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Manipur has been outlined. The TSA expresses its perspective on the NRC and its implications for the various communities in the state.
The Student organization further stated that the Manipur Government’s proclamation of April 7th as the State Level ‘Hun-Thadou Cultural Festival’ serves as a significant endorsement of the indigeneity, nativity, and citizenship of the Thadou tribe in Manipur.
This declaration, marked as a State’s Restricted Holiday, carries particular importance as it reinforces the cultural heritage and identity of the Thadou tribe. The grand celebration of this festival on April 18 and 19, 2023, in Kangpokpi further solidifies the commitment to recognizing and celebrating the rich cultural heritage of the Thadou community in Manipur.
The Thadou community, recognized as the largest tribe in Manipur, holds a stance on the NRC that reflects a nuanced approach. According to the TSA, they are not opposed to the NRC itself, as long as it is conducted fairly and inclusively. The community expresses its willingness to participate in the process if it guarantees the inclusion of all Indian citizens in Manipur without any form of bias or targeting against specific communities.
The joint statement also emphasizes the importance of taking concerned groups into confidence before embarking on the NRC exercise. The Thadou community believes that a successful and fair implementation of the NRC necessitates collaboration and dialogue among all stakeholders. The TSA advocates for transparency and cooperation to ensure that the process benefits all citizens while minimizing any potential negative impacts.
The TSA has been closely monitoring the situation in Manipur since the conflict began on May 3. The Thadou have been severely affected by the ongoing crisis, prompting the TSA to express its concerns and position on the matter.
The statement condemns all forms of violence against innocent civilians and underscores the TSA’s commitment to unity within the tribal community.
The Thadou community’s perspective on the NRC is rooted in unity and collaboration. The statement acknowledges the shared pain and grief of innocent victims, emphasizing the importance of tribal unity and cooperation in the face of adversity. The TSA calls for responsible leadership within different communities to control and prevent further acts of violence.
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The notable recognition of the esteemed warrior Pu Khotinthang Sitlhou (also known as Jampipa/Chief of Jampi, Tamenglong) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah during their recent visits to the State holds immense significance. This acknowledgment at the highest echelons of leadership underscores the pivotal role played by the Thadou community in India’s struggle for freedom.
These repeated mentions of Pu Khotinthang Sitlhou signify the profound contribution of the Thadou people to India’s historical fight for independence. Such recognition not only emphasizes their role as devoted citizens of India but also validates their status as indigenous inhabitants of Manipur.
The consistent spotlight on Pu Khotinthang Sitlhou serves as a reminder of the Thadou tribe’s unwavering dedication and substantial participation in shaping India’s journey towards liberation. It symbolizes their undeniable place in the annals of the country’s history and their enduring commitment to the welfare and prosperity of the nation.
Pu Khotinthang played a pivotal role as the prominent leader of Indian Thadou freedom fighters during the Thadou Gaal (War) that took place from 1917 to 1919, as highlighted by the Thadou Students’ Association (TSA).
The Coordinating Committee on Manipur Integrity (COCOMI), a highly esteemed entity dedicated to safeguarding the integrity of the State, has consistently released statements addressing concerns related to narco-terrorism and illegal immigrants. However, there is a call for COCOMI to provide clarity and elaboration on the specific groups or individuals they are referring to as narco-terrorists and illegal immigrants.
It’s noteworthy that the Manipur Government has established a Cabinet Sub-Committee with the purpose of identifying and monitoring individuals who have crossed the Myanmar border to seek refuge in Manipur due to the ongoing military coup in Myanmar. These refugees are currently housed in government-administered camps situated in the border town of Moreh, where they await the opportunity to safely return to their homes.
It is advised that COCOMI exercises sensitivity and caution when addressing such matters. There is a need to refrain from issuing statements that might be interpreted as targeting the indigenous tribal communities of Manipur, including the Thadou tribe, who have a historical legacy of contributing to the protection and well-being of the State.
By adopting a more considerate approach, COCOMI can help ensure that its statements do not inadvertently harm the harmony and unity among the diverse communities of Manipur.
Amidst these considerations, the paramount concern should be the safety and security of innocent civilians. This responsibility rests not only with the Central Government but also with the State Government.
It is imperative that the Manipur Government takes a more proactive stance to safeguard the well-being of civilians. This involves addressing the ongoing crisis with diligence and efficiency. Moreover, there is a pressing need for the Government to intensify its efforts in terms of relief and rehabilitation initiatives. This comprehensive approach must cater to the diverse needs of all those affected by the situation.
The Thadou Students’ Association (TSA) underscores the urgency of devising a concrete roadmap for a lasting solution to the prevailing challenges. This calls for a well-defined strategy that goes beyond immediate relief efforts and aims to establish a sustainable resolution.
The Association appeals for an approach that can lead to a permanent solution, ensuring stability, security, and prosperity for all stakeholders involved.