Massive Protests In Manipur Over Demand For National Register Of Citizens


Guwahati: Manipur’s capital Imphal saw clashes between protesters and the police after thousands organised rallies against the state government’s alleged “delaying tactics” in implementing the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and setting up the Manipur State Population Commission.

Six key student organisations supported by hundreds of women vendors of the “Ima Market” (Mothers’ Market) and members of the Coordinating Committee on Manipur Integrity (COCOMI) took out a rally towards Chief Minister Biren Singh’s official residence.

A huge contingent of police prevented the protesters from moving towards the Chief Minister’s residence, leading to clashes and injuring many on both sides.

After hours of clashes, arguments and chaos, the Manipur Police said the situation has been brought under control.

The students of the six organisations led by the Manipur Students’ Federation assembled first in front of Ima Market in central Imphal and then they started a rally with the support of women traders.

The protesters held placards that read “protect indigenous rights and future”, “save forests, save environment”.

The students’ organisation, COCOMI and the imas (women or mothers) of the all-women market announced to continue their protests demanding that steps be taken by the Manipur government to tackle illegal migration, implementation of the NRC and population commission in Manipur.

Salam Upen, the spokesperson of the six student organisations, said their efforts for protection and preservation of the indigenous people would continue until their demands are met.

According to the protesters, the influx of outsiders from both inside and outside the country, including people from Myanmar, Nepal and Bangladesh has significantly affected the identity, culture, economy, administration and environment of Manipur.

The student organisations demanded detecting and deporting illegal immigrants from Manipur.

After the Manipur assembly earlier last year adopted a private member resolution to establish a population commission in Manipur, the state cabinet approved the establishment of the Manipur State Population Commission.

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