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Army Brings Down Heavy Fire On Suspected Insurgents In Manipur, Rescues 75 Women


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Two soldiers fire a mortar towards unknown armed people in Manipur’s Uyok

Imphal:

The army engaged in a fierce gunfight with suspected insurgents and rescued 75 women of a social and cultural institution in Manipur, according to a statement by the military on Sunday.

The incident happened on May 16. The group of armed people started firing towards Uyok in Leimaram at 10.45 pm, the police said. Leimaram under Bishnupur district is 1.5 km from the nearest hills, and Uyok is right in the foothills.

The Assam Rifles in a post on the microblogging website X said soldiers “brought down heavy fire” on the unknown armed people, during which they also evacuated 75 Meira Paibis, a women-only social and cultural institution of the valley-dominant Meitei community.

The Assam Rifles also posted visual of two soldiers firing a mortar at the suspected insurgents.

The use of mortar to bombard the attackers’ position in the dark indicates the attack by the armed people on Uyok village was so intense that it needed a very strong response, sources said.

The Meira Paibis have thanked the Assam Rifles and the army for evacuating and rescuing them.

The hill-dominant Kuki-Zo tribes have set up bunkers on most of the hills surrounding Manipur’s valley areas, where the Meiteis live. The Meiteis have alleged the Kuki-Zo tribes of shooting at anyone including farmers in the foothills without provocation, while the Kuki-Zo tribes have accused the Meiteis of trying to take over hill areas with frequent attacks.

Over 220 have died and thousands have been internally displaced since ethnic violence broke out between the two ethnic communities in May 2023.

The Kuki-Zo tribes have demanded a “separate administration” carved out of Manipur, following the violence. However, the Meiteis have pointed out the Kuki-Zo tribes always wanted a separate land, and so the claim that the May 2023 violence led to the demand for a separate administration is completely bogus.



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