The Manipur government will deploy about 2,000 security personnel to allow the violence-hit people to carry out agricultural activities as there are reports about people roaming around with illegal weapons in both the Hills and Valley areas, Chief Minister N Biren Singh told reporters at Imphal on Monday.
Singh said as farmers carry out cultivation with the onset of the Monsoon, around 2,000 security personnel, including Manipur Rifles and the Indian Reserve Battalion, have been mobilised for additional deployment at places adjoining the hill areas where agricultural works are being taken up.
“The security personnel deployed would guard and prevent disturbances caused to farmers in both communities by armed miscreants,” he said.
He reiterated that central forces had also been deployed at the places earlier.
The decision comes after an appeal by people belonging to the Meitei and Kuki communities that agricultural activities may be severely impacted as the farmers are scared to venture into their fields, fearing attacks by armed miscreants.
Asserting that there is information on people with illegal arms roaming around in both hill and valley areas, Singh said that a mass frisking would be started. “As the law-and-order situation is improving, I again appeal to the public to return the snatched arms and ammunition before legal actions are taken up.”
Hilltop security post
Singh said that a decision was also taken to set up security posts on the hilltops for better control of the prevailing situation and added that drone surveys would also be conducted round the clock, with a central monitoring headquarters to monitor the situation and for reinforcement if necessary.
The CM further stated that all bunkers illegally set up in both hill and valley areas would be pulled down. The army will lead the operation, which will also be joined by paramilitary forces.
“People of both communities have established buffer zones and have set up bunkers illegally, so no private bunker would be allowed in any place.”
Over 120 people have been killed and over 60,000 others have been displaced due to the violence between the Meitei and the Kuki communities since May 3. Although the army controlled the riot, sporadic incidents of firing and arson have kept the state troubled. Four men, belonging to both Meitei and Kukis, were also killed on Sunday in Bishnupur and Churachandpur districts.