In a recent outbreak of violence in Manipur state, India, clashes between Hindu Meitei protestors and the Christian Kuki tribe have resulted in the displacement of a staggering 36,655 individuals from their homes.
The Chief Minister of Manipur, N Biren Singh, revealed these disheartening figures, adding that while most of the affected population has been successfully evacuated, approximately 10,000 people still find themselves stranded in vulnerable conditions. Additionally, the violence has caused extensive damage, with 1,700 houses and religious structures being destroyed.
According to a report published on May 8, 2023, in the regional newspaper, the Sangei Express, Chief Minister Singh expressed his commitment to safeguarding the lives and property of all individuals across the state, emphasizing the absence of discrimination in the relief efforts. He assured the public that every possible measure is being taken to provide the best care and support to those who are stranded, ensuring their safety in designated locations and shelter camps.
“All efforts are being made to protect life and property, without discrimination, across the state”, the paper reports him saying. “All who are stranded at different locations are being provided best possible care and support in safe locations and shelter camps”.
The outbreak of violence has triggered a significant humanitarian crisis, with tens of thousands of people forcibly displaced from their homes. The ongoing clashes between the Hindu Meitei protestors and the Christian Kuki tribe have created an atmosphere of fear and uncertainty in Manipur state. The situation remains tense, with sporadic incidents of violence and destruction reported from various areas.
According to a report in the Sangei Express on May 11, Education Minister Thounaoj am Basanta Kumar provided official figures stating that 68 people have lost their lives and 236 individuals have been injured in the recent incidents. However, local Christian organizations in Manipur contest these numbers, claiming that the actual figures are significantly higher.
“The destruction is massive. Something like this has not happened in a targeted way against the Christians of that area”, President of the All India Christian Council, Bishop Joseph D’Souza told Premier.
Local authorities, in collaboration with state agencies and humanitarian organizations, are working tirelessly to address the pressing needs of the affected population. Efforts are underway to provide immediate assistance, including food, clean water, medical aid, and shelter, to those who have been displaced. Special attention is being given to the safety and well-being of women, children, and the elderly.
In the face of this humanitarian crisis, the international community should extend its support to Manipur, offering aid and assistance to alleviate the suffering of those affected by the violence. It is through collective efforts that we can strive towards a world where conflicts are resolved peacefully, ensuring the well-being and safety of all individuals, regardless of their religious or ethnic background.