Manipur, Amit Shah
Home Minister Amit Shah meeting various stake holders in Manipur during his recent visit

BJP MLA sets up drop box in Imphal to deposit snatched weapons

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Coming with an idea which looks arcane, L Susindro Meitei, BJP legislator from Imphal East, has set up a drop box for returning weapons snatched from security forces at his home in Imphal.

“Please drop your snatched weapons here,” reads a large poster at a covered shed outside his home, both in English and in Meitei language.

A tagline below this adds, “Feel free to do so.” The line indicates that questions will not be asked how the weapons came in their possession in the first place, thus ensuring anonymity.

Also Read: Manipur violence cases: CBI forms 10-member SIT under DIG-rank officer

Some weapons, including a couple of automatic rifles and live ammunition belts, were actually present in the box when a PTI reporter went there.

Large numbers of weapons were looted from police stations in early May when ethnic violence broke out in Manipur. Both Chief Minister N. Biren Singh and Union Home Minister Amit Shah have appealed the people to surrender their weapons.

Army and para-military forces in collaboration with state police have been carrying out combing operations to defang communities and bring back peace here.

At least 35 weapons and warlike stores were recovered during joint combing operations by security forces on Friday (June 9), an official said.

Also Read: Manipur violence: Members of Kuki community hold protest outside Shah’s residence

So far, about 100 people have lost their lives and 310 others have sustained injured in the ethnic violence that broke out in the state a month ago. A total of 37,450 people are sheltered in 272 relief camps.

Clashes first broke out on May 3 after a Tribal Solidarity March was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley.

Tribal Nagas and Kukis constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.

(With agency inputs)

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