Manipur forum in Delhi to file FIR against killings

Imphal, Feb 10 (IANS) The Manipur Tribals Forum Delhi on Wednesday said it will file police complaints against the Manipur government for the killing of nine tribals by the police during a protest in September last year.

The bodies of the nine people, who were killed in violence in Churachandpur district after the assembly passed three bills for the protection of indigenous people, have been lying in a morgue since then.

The Manipur Tribals Forum Delhi said it was “not happy” that the state government has not booked anyone regarding the killings.

Representatives of the group have already met President Pranab Mukherjee, Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju and other officials and that they understood the grievances of the tribals as “genuine”.

The group claimed that many parliamentarians also supported the tribal cause.

It also demanded a high-level inquiry into the killings, and that the Centre ought to intervene in the matter of passing of the three bills by the Manipur assembly.

However, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh has maintained that there was not a single word against the tribals in the three bills, and if it was pointed out on the contrary, the government was ready to delete the same.

The group also demanded a separate administration for tribals in Manipur.

Violence erupted on September 1, 2015, following the state government’s adoption on August 31 of three landmark bills — Protection of Manipur Peoples Bill 2015, Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms (seventh amendment) Bill 2015, and Manipur Shops and Establishment (second amendment) Bill 2015. The bills are pending with the president.

Churachandpur witnessed widespread violence, when several schools and government offices were torched.

Police opened fire at protestors, and eight people were killed. One youth died in a road accident during the protests.

Protesting groups in Manipur refused to claim the bodies and these are still in a hospital morgue in the district. On Tuesday, representatives of all important organisations and women’s groups resolved that the bodies will be buried on February 13.

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