Students participating in a rally to commemorate 54th Hunger Marchers’ Day in Imphal, Manipur on Tuesday Credit: EastMojo image

Imphal: The All Manipur Students’ Union (AMSU), an apex students’ organisation of Manipur, on Tuesday observed 54th Hunger Marchers’ Day, locally known as ‘Chaklam Khongchat’, in remembrance of the four individuals who laid down their lives during the famine-like situation in the state in 1965.

Earlier in the day, a floral tribute was held at the memorial site at Pishum Chingamacha in Imphal West.

Recalling the patriotic days, scores of people, including students from across the state capital, joined the mass rally which was carried out from Pishum to DM College in Imphal.

Hunger Marchers’ Day or Chaklam Khongchat being observed at DM College Arts ground in Imphal, Manipur

As part of the observation, a huge public gathering was also organised at DM College Arts ground where people from various fields participated in the event.

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Speaking to EastMojo on the sidelines of the event, AMSU president Peter Laishram said: “Today, we are observing this day from 1965 when the artificial famine-like situation was created by rich businessmen in collusion with the then government.”

“They (then government and businessmen) exported rice and pulses and people in the state were suffering because they couldn’t get the products. During the mass movement, four people were killed and till date, we observe the day in remembrance of their bravery and sacrifice,” he said.

Led by AMSU representatives, college students participating in a mass rally on 54th Hunger Marchers’ Day in Imphal, Manipur

Besides revolting against all kinds of human rights violations, AMSU strongly condemned the ongoing Indo-Naga peace talks and vowed to protect the integrity of the state.

“From the beginning of the talk, AMSU has strongly opposed the ongoing peace accord between the Indian government and the Nagas. We urged the government not to degrade the power of the state assembly as well as divide it into various ethnic groups,” Peter added.

During the mass movement, also known as students’ uprising of August 27 against the crisis in the state in 1965, Nabakumar, Nilamani and Pramodini sacrificed their lives on the spot, whereas Laishram Chaobal Singh succumbed to his injuries after a month of the incident.

The unfortunate incident also led to the birth of AMSU, one of the oldest students’ organisations in Manipur, to unite the students of the state under a single umbrella.

Since then, AMSU has been a driving force in bringing out grievances and voicing against the injustices meted out to the people, especially the students of the state.

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