PM Modi says 'some elements adding fuel to fire' in Manipur, urges Opposition to 'rise above politics'

Over 500 people arrested and over 11,000 FIRs registered in Manipur, PM said.
Last Updated : 03 July 2024, 16:26 IST

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday asked Opposition parties to "rise above politics" in order to douse the fire in Manipur as "some elements are adding fuel to the fire" simmering in the strife-torn state for more than a year despite the Union government’s "efforts" to restore peace.

"I want to warn the elements trying to add fuel to fire in Manipur to stop such activities. At one time, people of Manipur will reject them," he said in the Rajya Sabha, replying to a debate on the motion of thanks to the President’s address. “It is our duty to rise above politics to restore normalcy in Manipur.”

Over 500 people had been arrested and over 11,000 FIRs had been registered in Manipur, he added.

Since May 2023, ethnic violence erupted in the north-eastern state involving the majority Meitei community that inhabit the Imphal valley and the minority Kuki-Zo tribal population living in the hills.

Over 200 individuals have been killed and more than 60,000 have been displaced from their homes as thousands of houses and hundreds of religious structures were damaged.

“More than 11,000 FIRs have been lodged. Manipur is a small state. More than 500 people have been arrested,” Modi said, countering the Opposition's attack on his handling of the crisis.

“We will have to accept that in Manipur, violent incidents are decreasing. This means there is hope for peace. Today, in most parts of Manipur, like normal days, schools, colleges, offices are running. Exams too were held there like in other parts of the country,” he said.

Recalling his speech in the previous session, he said, “On Manipur, I had spoken elaborately in the last session. But I would like to repeat one more time. To stabilise the situation in Manipur, the government is making relentless efforts. The Union Home Minister stayed put for days. The Minister of State for Home stayed there for weeks talking to people.”

The Prime Minister pointed out that social conflict in Manipur is deeply rooted with a long history, leading to the imposition of President's rule 10 times since Independence. He also mentioned about the five-year-long social conflict in Manipur from 1993 onwards.

On the flood situation, he said two teams from the National Disaster Response Force had reached Manipur as the Centre was providing "full support" to tackle the flood crisis. “The (conflict) situation in Manipur needs to be handled with wisdom and patience,” he said.

Published 03 July 2024, 16:26 IST

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