A woman holds a placard during a protest march over sexual violence against women in the northeastern state of Manipur and the ongoing conflict between two ethnic groups, Kukis and Meiteis, in Kolkata, Eastern India, 26 July 2023. EFE/EPA/PIYAL ADHIKARY

Indian gov’t ‘completely failed’ in deadly Manipur clashes: Opposition

New Delhi, Jul 30 (EFE).- Indian members of the opposition on Sunday accused the government of having “completely failed” to put an end to the deadly ethnic violence that has rocked the northeastern state of Manipur for three months.

A delegation of opposition MPs arrived in embattled Manipur on Saturday to assess the situation in the state from where a few weeks ago a video of two women who were forced to parade naked went viral and shocked the world.

The lawmakers from the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) submitted a memorandum to Governor Anusuiya Uikey where they raised their concerns over the failure of both the central and state governments to deal with the escalating violence that had left 140 dead, 500 injured, over 5,000 homes torched and the internal displacement of over 60,000 people.

“It is clear beyond doubt that the state machinery has completely failed to control the situation in the last nearly three months,” the opposition coalition said after visiting several refugee camps.

Manipur was plunged into a wave of violence on May 3, when hostilities broke out between the minority Kuki tribe and the majority Meitei people.

The clashes flared when the mostly Hindu Meitei group sought Scheduled Tribe (ST) status prompting the anger of other tribes inhabiting neighboring mountains.

INDIA, which recently formed ahead of next year’s general elections and brings together 26 political parties with the historic Indian National Congress party at the helm, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s “silence” showed “his brazen indifference to the violence in Manipur.”

The opposition MPs urged Modi to “restore peace and harmony taking all effective measures, where justice should be the cornerstone.”

A video that surfaced last week of two women being forced to parade naked in front of dozens of men in a rural area of Thoubal district prompted Modi to break his silence on Manipur.

He condemned the incident, in his first reference to the conflict since clashes first erupted several months ago, but was criticized for his silence on the widespread violence in a state ruled by his party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The opposition coalition introduced in Parliament last Wednesday lodged two no-confidence votes against the government, both of which are doomed given Modi’s majority in the lower house of parliament. EFE