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Manipur's Tale of Turmoil: Unraveling the Roots of Conflict

Unrest and Unity Amidst a Diverse Landscape

By Bhawarth S. SaraswatPublished 7 months ago 4 min read


Hello world! If you're wondering about the ongoing events in Manipur and the reasons behind the conflict, you've come to the right place. As a beginner in writing, I'll do my best to provide you with the essential details to understand this complex situation. Let's dive into the story of Manipur and uncover the truth behind the chaos.


Once upon a time, on a fateful day of May 3, a solidarity march organized by the All Tribal Students Union Manipur (ATSUM) triggered a series of unfortunate events in Manipur. The march aimed to protest against a recent Manipur High Court order, which demanded the state government's recommendation to include the Meitei community in the Scheduled Tribes (STs) list.

As the tension escalated on May 4, the Centre decided to invoke Article 355 of the Constitution, granting emergency powers to protect the state from external aggression or internal disturbances. In response, convoys of the Army, Assam Rifles, Rapid Action Force, and local police personnel rushed into the affected areas of Manipur.

The aftermath of these events left a trail of sorrow, with over a dozen lives lost, and hundreds injured. The violence displaced more than 9,000 people, including members of the Kuki and Meitei communities, causing significant upheaval. However, the authorities managed to rescue around 9,000 people and provided them with shelter during these challenging times. The unrest also led to the destruction of buildings, homes, vehicles, and properties, leaving many hearts broken. But the exact count of fatalities is yet to be officially confirmed, adding to the anxiety.

Continuing Tensions in Manipur:

As the days passed, the situation remained turbulent, and authorities struggled to regain control. The Army conducted flag marches to restore peace, but the impact seemed limited. Mobile data and broadband connections remained suspended, isolating the people further.

Amidst the chaos, people from various communities found themselves caught in the crossfire. Around 5,000 people sought safety in Churachandpur, another 2,000 in Imphal Valley, and 2,000 more in Moreh, Tengnoupal district. The violence escalated when an armed mob attacked the Meitei community during the march in the Torbung area of Churachandpur district, leading to retaliatory attacks in the Valley districts.

Chief Minister N. Biren Singh's appeal for calm faced challenges, as indefinite curfews were imposed in several districts. In Kangpokpi district's Motbung area, over 20 houses were set ablaze, leaving the Kuki community devastated. Similarly, more than 1,000 Meitei people fled Churachandpur district, seeking safety.

Real Cause of Conflict:

The ethnic unrest in Manipur goes beyond the demands for the Meitei community's inclusion in the ST list. Deep-rooted issues have been brewing beneath the surface, leading to this unfortunate turn of events.

One major concern is the government's actions regarding reserved and protected forests in the hill areas. These regions hold significance for various tribal communities, such as the Kuki people. They feel marginalized and persecuted, especially with the presence of Chin people from Myanmar seeking refuge in India. The government's tough stance on so-called illegal immigrants has only fueled the tension.

The issue of poppy cultivation in the hill areas adds another layer to the conflict. While the government aims to tackle drug trafficking, some communities feel their way of life and livelihoods are unfairly targeted.

Land scarcity has also become a pressing concern. As tribal villages grow, they spread into surrounding forest areas, claiming historical and ancestral rights. However, the government disputes these claims, leading to disputes over land ownership and usage. This further strains the relationship between communities.

Additionally, a lack of clear policies on recognizing new villages and comprehensive forest management has contributed to resentment and confusion within the ruling party.

In Summary:

The story of Manipur is one of struggle, anger, and the search for peace. The demand for the Meitei community's inclusion in the ST list acted as a catalyst, but underlying issues such as historical grievances, land disputes, and government policies have intensified the conflicts.

I'm Bhawarth S. Saraswat, the editor of this article, I hope this account has shed light on the complex situation in Manipur. Resolving this unrest will require empathy, dialogue, and sincere efforts to address the underlying causes and foster unity among the diverse communities. May the story of Manipur find its way to lasting peace and harmony.

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About the Creator

Bhawarth S. Saraswat

I'm an avid bibliophile and aspiring writer who finds joy in reading and writing on diverse topics. passion for sharing knowledge, my dreams of inspiring others through the power of words on a literary journey of creativity and exploration!

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Comments (2)

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  • Scott Christenson7 months ago

    thx for the article... i'm sure its all so much more complicated than whatever they show us on BBC. And then it came out that the video was from months ago, and the situation might have been a bit different than what they said. Everything in the news is like a 5 second clip of the most terrible thing they can show us without any explanation. For these articles.. if you're in India, maybe give us some of your own personal experiences and thoughts etc.. hvae you ever met anyone from that region etc..

  • Tushar7 months ago

    Wow, very informative Written very vividly

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