With the Congress-led Opposition continuing to target the BJP-led NDA dispensation over its handling of the Manipur crisis, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday told the Rajya Sabha that his government has been making every effort to restore peace in the strife-torn Northeastern. State.

Asking the Opposition to rise above politics on the Manipur issue, PM Modi said, “Some elements are adding fuel to the fire and such elements will be rejected by the people of Manipur.”

In the course of his reply to the debate on the motion of thanks on the President’s address, the PM told the Upper House that 11,000 FIRs have been registered and 500 people arrested in Manipur so far.

“On Manipur, I had spoken elaborately in the last session. But I would like to repeat one more time. To stabilize the situation in Manipur, the government is making relentless efforts. Whatever incidents have happened there, more than 11,000 FIRs have been lodged. Mainpur is a small state. More than 500 people have been arrested,” the PM said.

“We will have to accept that in Manipur, violent incidents are decreasing. This means there is hope for peace. Today, in most parts of Manipur, like normal days, schools, colleges, offices are running. In Manipur too, exams were held there like in other parts,” said Modi.

Festive offer

Manipur has been roiled by ethnic conflict between the Meitei and the Kuki-Zomi communities since May last year.

The PM told the Rajya Sabha that the talks between the Centre, Manipur government and other stakeholders were continuing in order to ensure peace in the state.

“Efforts are being made. It has not happened during the past governments that Union Home Minister has stayed there (in Manipur) for days. The MoS (Home) stayed there for weeks and held conversations with stakeholders. Efforts were made to bring people together. All senior government officials who are posted there repeatedly visit the places physically. All efforts are being made to bring peace,” said Modi.

He also reminded the Congress of the turmoil faced by Manipur in 1993 when it was in power at the Centre.

“All of us must rise above politics and contribute to making the situation normal there. This is our duty,” said Modi. “Those elements who are adding fuel to Manipur fire. I request them to stop this. A time will come when Manipur will reject them.”

The PM also said, “Those who know the history of Manipur, they know that there has been a long social struggle there. The roots of the struggle are very deep. No one can deny this. Congress people should not forget that because of these reasons, President’s rule had to be imposed 10 times… There has to be some issues. And this has not happened in our tenure. Still, for political gains, the kind of movements there are shameful.”

He said, “In 1993, a similar series of incidents had happened in Manipur. And it was so strong that it lasted for five years. We must make efforts to improve the situation after understanding all this. Those who want to contribute, we welcome them. But we are working to bring peace.”

The PM added that “At this time Manipur is also facing the issue of floods and the Central government is working with the state government and providing all possible support… So, in a natural disaster too, the Center and the state government are worried about Manipur ”.

PM Modi’s statement came a day after the Opposition resorted to slogans of “Justice for Manipur” on the Manipur issue in the Lok Sabha during his reply there to the debate on the motion of thanks on the President’s address.

The crisis Manipur did not figure in President Droupadi Murumu’s address to both Houses of Parliament on June 27.

Flagging this, the newly elected Congress MP from Inner Manipur, A Bimol Akoijam, late Monday went all out to attack the Modi government for “ignoring” the state.

“Is this silence communicating to the people of the Northeast and particularly Manipur that you do not matter in the Indian State’s scheme of things?” Akoijam said, addressing the Lok Sabha around midnight, hours after Leader of Opposition (LoP) Rahul Gandhi also highlighted the Manipur crisis among other issues during his speech.

Drawing the members’ attention to the absence of the Manipur crisis in the President’s address, Akoijam said: “This is not a simple absence. It is a reminder of the ‘rashtra chetana (national consciousness)’ which excludes people. You must realize that more than 60,000 people are languishing in relief camps in wretched conditions for the last one year… 60,000 people homeless is not a joke. Over 200 people have died. There has been a civil war-like situation where people, armed to the teeth, are roaming around and fighting each other, defending their villages and the Indian State is a mute spectator to this tragedy for one year.”

Akoijam also said he was “amazed” at being allotted a slot close to midnight for his address, when there was hardly anyone present in the House, including from the Congress ranks.

The Congress rejected PM Modi’s statement on Manipur. In a statement posted on X, the All India Congress Committee (AICC)’s general secretary in charge of communications Jairam Ramesh said, “Today in the Rajya Sabha, after months of absolute silence on the issue, the non-biological PM made the astonishing claim that the situation in Manipur is normal. In actuality, the situation is still tense as the MP from Inner Manipur pointed out in the Lok Sabha on 1st July.”

Ramesh also said, “And the non-biological Pradhan Mantri has still not visited Manipur since it erupted on the night of May 3rd, 2023 – nor has he met with the political leaders of the state. The President’s Address too was silent on the issue.”

The Congress wrested both the Lok Sabha seats from the NDA in Manipur in the recent elections.