The Congress on Thursday attacked Home Minister Amit Shah over his Assam visit, saying he goes all the way to Guwahati but does not deem it fit to visit Manipur which has been ”burning for 22 days”.
Shah is on a day-long visit to Assam to attend three events to mark the completion of two years of the Himanta Biswa Sarma-led BJP government in the state.
Taking a dig at Shah, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said, ”The Union Home Minister goes all the way to Guwahati today, but does not deem it fit to visit Imphal when Manipur has been burning for 22 days.” ”This is the same Union Home Minister who held 16 rallies and 15 road shows in Karnataka, but cannot find time for the people of Manipur who are suffering a lot due to the ideology and politics of the so-called Double Engine Sarkar,” Ramesh said in a tweet.
Later, at an event in Guwahati, Shah said that he will travel to Manipur to resolve all disputes, but all groups should remove mistrust and suspicion among themselves.
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”I will go to Manipur soon and stay there for three days but before that, both groups should remove mistrust and suspicion among themselves and ensure that peace is restored in the state,” Shah said.
The Centre will ensure that justice is given to all who suffered in the clashes which broke out in the state, but ”people must hold a dialogue to ensure peace in the state,” the Home Minister said.
The Congress on Wednesday had demanded that Prime Minister Narendra Modi call a meeting of community leaders of Manipur in an effort to bring peace in the ethnic violence-hit state.
Congress leader Ajoy Kumar had said India is in ”danger” if things are not set right in the northeastern state as it shares the international border with Myanmar.
Clashes broke out in Manipur after a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts of the state on May 3 to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
The violence in Manipur was preceded by tension over the eviction of Kuki villagers from reserve forest land, which had led to a series of smaller agitations.
Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley. Tribals — Nagas and Kukis — constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.
The ethnic clashes claimed over 70 lives and some 10,000 army and paramilitary personnel had to be deployed to restore normalcy in the northeastern state.