Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh announced on Sunday that security forces have successfully eliminated approximately 40 armed militants who were responsible for setting houses on fire and indiscriminately attacking civilians. These operations were initiated with the aim of restoring peace to the troubled northeastern state plagued by ethnic conflicts.
According to police officials, a minimum of two individuals lost their lives and twelve others were injured in various incidents involving the firing upon civilians and clashes between militants and security forces that occurred since the early hours of the day.
In the Imphal West district’s Phayeng area, one individual was fatally shot and another suffered gunshot wounds allegedly caused by suspected Kuki militants, as reported by police officials.
The recent confrontations ensued following the initiation of combing operations by the army and para-military forces with the objective of disarming communities and establishing peace, according to officials.
On Sunday, Chief Minister N Biren Singh stated that the recent clashes in Manipur were not conflicts between rival communities but rather engagements between Kuki militants and security forces.
Singh emphasised, “In response to these terrorist groups, who are employing sophisticated weapons against the civilian population, security forces have successfully neutralised around 30 of these terrorists in different locations. Some have also been apprehended by the security forces.”
Earlier in the day, Army Chief General Manoj Pande met with Chief Minister Singh to discuss the ongoing security situation in Manipur and the measures undertaken by the Army to restore peace.
An official revealed, “As per our information, incidents of firing have been reported from Sugnu in Kakching, Kangvi in Churachandpur, Kangchup in Imphal West, Sagolmang in Imphal East, Nungoipokpi in Bishenpur, Khurkhul in Imphal West, and YKPI in Kangpokpi.”
According to reports, new barricades have emerged in areas where women are stationed. Additionally, reports suggest there is an unverified report suggesting that a Meitei group looted weapons from the Kakching police station, as stated by an official.
The outbreak of ethnic clashes, resulting in the loss of more than 75 lives, initially occurred in Manipur following a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ held on May 3 in the hill districts. The march was organized to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.