Twin Manipur strikes hit peoples' day

A double "shutdown" called by several militant groups in Manipur on Sunday did not disrupt chief minister N. Biren Singh's routine meeting with the people of the state to listen to their grievances.

By Khelen Thokchom in Imphal
  • Published 16.10.17
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Biren Singh meets an elderly woman on Meeyamgi Nupit in Imphal on Sunday. Telegraph picture

Imphal: A double "shutdown" called by several militant groups in Manipur on Sunday did not disrupt chief minister N. Biren Singh's routine meeting with the people of the state to listen to their grievances.

However, the number of people at the meeting saw a decrease compared to other months.

The Co-ordination Committee of four militant groups - United National Liberation Front, Revolutionary Peoples Front (political wing of Peoples' Liberation Army), Peoples' Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak (Progressive) and Peoples Revolutionary Party of Kangleipak - called a total shutdown from Saturday midnight to 6pm on Sunday to oppose Manipur's merger with the Indian Union on this day in 1949.

Three other militant groups - Kanglei Yawol Kanna Lup, Kangleipak Communist Party, both of Manipur and National Liberation Front of Twipra - called a similar shutdown of Manipur and Tripura from Saturday midnight till 6pm on Sunday on the same issue.

Tripura merged with the Indian Union on October 15, 1949.

In Imphal, all shops remained closed. Only some women were seen selling vegetables. Transport services were unavailable barring a few private vehicles plying in the state capital.

There were no reports of any strike-related violence. Security measures were in place to prevent any trouble during the two strikes.

Despite the shutdown, Biren Singh met people from all sections of the society to listen to their grievances and aspirations. The day, the fifteenth of every month, is reserved as meeyamgi numit (peoples' day).

The number of people who attended the meeyamgi numit on Sunday was around 1,000, which is around 1,500 to 2,000 at other times.

Biren Singh received around 200 complaints during the meeting.

Official sources said the chief minister on Sunday gave first preference to differently-abled persons, widows, and elderly people.

Biren Singh received them from 9.30am and ended the meeting at 12.30pm on Sunday. In the earlier meetings, the chief minister would start from 9am and continue till 5pm.

The directorate of information and public relations on Sunday organised a public screening of film/documentaries highlighting the achievements and developments in the state, including the achievements made within the 100 days of the new BJP-led government in the past seven months.

Health department officials were deputed at the secretariat for the day to attend to the people, who sought medical assistance like reimbursement and health care in government medical hospitals.

The officials of Manipur State Co-operative Bank Ltd, Manipur State Illness Assistance Fund, education, youth affairs and sports, minority and other backward classes, social welfare and police departments were also present at the meeting.