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Imphal: Amid tensions in Manipur, the Central government on Monday declared 9 Meitei extremist groups along with their factions, wings and front organisations as unlawful associations with immediate effect for the next five years.

The groups were declared unlawful associations “under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA)” for advocating secession of Manipur from India through armed struggles.

As per the notification issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), the groups that were declared banned for five years were the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and its political wing, the Revolutionary People’s Front (RPF), the United National Liberation Front (UNLF) and its armed wing Manipur Peoples’ Army (MPA), the People’s Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (PREPAK) and its armed wing Red Army, the Kangleipak Communist Party (KCP) and its armed wing (also called the Red Army), the Kanglei Yaol Kanba Lup (KYKL), the Coordination Committee (CorCom) and the Alliance for Socialist Unity Kangleipak (ASUK).

The Centre collectively referred these groups as the ‘Meitei Extremist Organisations’.

The notification asserts that Meitei extremist organisations pose a threat to India’s sovereignty and integrity. These groups are accused of employing armed means to achieve their objectives, attacking and killing security forces, police, and civilians in Manipur. The Centre also alleged that the groups engage in acts of intimidation, extortion, and looting to collect funds, make international connections to influence public opinion and seek support for their secessionist goals. The notification mentions the establishment of camps in neighbouring countries for sanctuaries, training, and clandestine procurement of arms and ammunition.

It further stated that the Central government is of the opinion that the activities of the Meitei extremist organisations are considered detrimental to the sovereignty and integrity of India and that they are unlawful associations.

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According to the notification, the Centre believes that without prompt intervention to restrain Meitei extremist organisations, there is a risk of them intensifying secessionist, subversive, terrorist, and violent actions. These groups may collaborate with entities opposed to India’s sovereignty, engage in civilian killings, target law enforcement, acquire illegal weapons from international sources, and extort funds for unlawful activities.

The home ministry’s ban on the Meitei extremist groups came at a time when the state of Manipur continue reports of firing and violence in the wake of the ethnic conflict over the last six months. The communal violence in Manipur has already claimed over 180 persons lives and left injured several hundreds, besides burning houses and villages.

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