Humanitarian crisis

The state of Manipur is in utter chaos due to the two month old economic blockade imposed by Naga group. United Naga Council (UNC) has blocked NH-2 (Imphal-Dimapur) and NH-37 (Imphal-Jiribam), which serve as lifelines for landlocked Manipur, for 56 days now. The blockade was imposed against the state government’s proposed move to create new districts of Jiribam and Sadar Hills. UNC is up in arms against the creation of two new districts – Sadar Hills district carved out of Senapati and Jiribam in Imphal East. They allege the new districts encroach on ancestral land of the Nagas.
State government refused to budge and has gone ahead with the move to create the new districts. Further Manipur govt arrested members of UNC which aggrieved the Naga group. The two month old economic blockade has deeply angered the people of valley. They have launched counter blockade and has cut off all road leading to hill districts of Manipur. Many Naga families living in Imphal are stranded and not able to move out. Naga group is refusing to lift blockade till their demands which include release of arrested UNC leaders and stopping the creation of new districts are met. On the other hand Manipur government first want blockade to be lifted before any talks can be done. With both side refusing to budge from their respective position, the centre will have to intervene at some point. MoS Home Kiren Rijiju recently visited state and called for an end to the blockade. Centre is also rushing in additional paramilitary forces to try re-opening the blocked highways. Urgent steps should be initiated by all parties including centre, state government and Naga group before situation turns really bad. Also this is not for the first time that Manipur is witnessing such kind of economic blockade. It is a great humanitarian crisis where common people suffers a lot.

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