Manipur gunfight

Imphal, June 13: Violence continues to plague the troubled state of Manipur as a gunfight between militants and village volunteers in the Khamenlok area of Imphal East district resulted in the injury of nine individuals.

The exchange of fire persisted late into Monday night, with casualties increasing as the confrontation unfolded.

Initially, three casualties were reported, but the number rose as the gun battle extended. Both sides eventually retreated, but not before the village volunteers set fire to makeshift bunkers and a watchtower constructed by the militants, according to a police officer.

The Khamenlok area lies on the border between the Meitei-dominated Imphal East district and the tribal-majority Kangpokpi district. The injured individuals have been admitted to local hospitals, with one person in critical condition and the others considered out of danger, as confirmed by medical authorities.

To prevent further outbreaks of violence and establish control, security forces have been heavily deployed in the area, engaging in area domination exercises.

The intense firing between village volunteers and militants erupted on Monday, following three relatively calm days in the area. However, in a separate incident in Govindpur village in Bishnupur district, a militant was killed and two others were injured in a gunfight with security forces. The militants had been attempting to construct bunkers around the villages when they were challenged by the security forces.

Also Read: Manipur Peace Panel: Kukis Express Unhappiness while Meiteis Welcome the Move

The state of Manipur has been grappling with ethnic violence between the Meitei and Kuki communities, resulting in a significant loss of lives and injuries. In response, the deployment of army and para-military personnel has been carried out to restore peace in the state.

Curfew remains in effect in 11 out of the 16 districts of Manipur, with internet services suspended throughout the entire northeastern state.

The clashes initially erupted on May 3 when a “Tribal Solidarity March” was organized in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

The situation in Manipur remains tense as efforts to quell the violence and restore stability continue. The authorities must work diligently to find a peaceful resolution to the conflicts and promote unity among the diverse communities of the state.