Meiteis of Tripura appeal for peace in Manipur

Agartala: The Metei community of Tripura has appealed for peace in strife-torn Manipur and opposed any move to bifurcate the state on ethnic lines.

The Puthiba Welfare and Cultural Society and All Tripura Meitei Community sought the intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah to restore peace in the violence-hit state.

“We are worried over the developments in Manipur since May 3. We strongly oppose any move to bifurcate the state on ethnic lines. Peace must prevail for its overall development,” Dipak Kumar Singh, a leader of the Pothiba Welfare and Cultural Society, said on Monday.

The two outfits brought out a candle-light vigil in Agartala on Sunday.

Students from Manipur studying in various colleges in Agartala also took part in the programme.

At least 100 people lost their lives and 310 others were injured in the ethnic violence in Manipur that broke out a month ago.

Clashes first broke out on May 3 after a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

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Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley.

Tribals Nagas and Kukis constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.

Following the violence, several tribal MLAs of Manipur have demanded the bifurcation of the state along ethnic lines, which has been opposed by Chief Minister N Biren Singh.

Also read | Remove our churches from SC petition: Meitei Christians tell Kuki groups

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