Judicial panel to probe violence in Manipur : Amit Shah

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Union Home Minister visits Manipur

Union Home and Cooperation Minister Shri Amit Shah announced a series of measures, including a judicial probe panel, a peace committee, and an inter-agency unified command for better coordination in Manipur on 01 June, 2023. Shri Shah, who reviewed the security situation during his visit to Manipur and reached out to Meitei and Kuki groups in multiple meetings said a strict action would be taken for any violation of ceasefire pacts.

Addressing a press conference at the end of his four-day visit, Shri Shah said the judicial committee, led by a retired High Court Judge, would investigate the cause of the violence and identify those responsible for it.

A peace committee, led by Governor Smt. Anusuiya Uikey and comprising stakeholders like industrialists, sportspersons, elected representatives, and both Kuki and Meitei members will also be constituted, he said.

Besides Imphal, Shri Shah also visited Moreh, Churachandpur and Kangpokpi, visited relief camps housing Meiteis and Kukis, met representatives of 22 Meitei civil society organisations (CSOs) and 25 Kuki-Zomi CSOs, as well as retired officers, leaders from 11 political parties, national athletes and elected representatives. The peace committee will include representatives of the CSOs.

An Inter-Agency Unified Command will be set up for “better coordination” among all security agencies on the ground, and will be headed by Kuldiep Singh, security advisor to the state government.

The Union Home Minister also announced a CBI probe to investigate six cases, including five identified cases from all registered cases and one case of general conspiracy.

Speaking of militant groups, Shri Shah said: “I want to give a stern message to the SoO (Suspension of Operations agreement brokering ceasefire) groups. Any kind of violation of SoO agreements will be met with very severely and will be treated as breaking the agreement. From today, we will monitor this very strictly,” he said. A number of Kuki militant groups have signed the SoO.

He also appealed to people possessing weapons looted from government armouries to surrender their weapons, stating that police would begin mass combing operations. Asked about looting of arms by civilians, he said, “Quite a lot of arms have returned. When a mob approaches, there is hesitation to fire at them directly.”
Shri Shah announced a relief and rehabilitation package of Rs 10 lakh each for the families of those killed, with both the state and central governments contributing equal amounts. A compensation package for those who were injured, or suffered property damage will be notified.

He further said, “There is no shortage of essential goods, 30,000 metric tonnes more than the fixed quota of rice has been sent by the Union government, to be distributed over two months… Gas, petrol, and vegetables are on their way”.

To implement these measures, Shri Shah said, a joint secretary level official and five director level officials from different Union government departments will be sent to Manipur. “For a permanent solution, we have done border fencing along 10 km of the Myanmar-Manipur border on a trial basis, and done the tendering process for another 80 km. We have begun surveys along the remaining border. The work of collecting the biometrics of people coming from the neighbouring country has begun,” he added.