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At Vijayadashami speech, RSS chief poses 9 questions on Manipur violence

RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat questioned the origins of the Manipur conflict, foreign involvement, and the persistence of unrest despite a state government's efforts to maintain peace. Bhagwat emphasized the need for multi-dimensional solutions

At Vijayadashami speech, RSS chief poses 9 questions on Manipur violence
First Published Oct 24, 2023, 9:55 AM IST

Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh on Tuesday raised nine questions with regard to the Manipur violence wherein, among other aspects, he sought to know about who had a vested interest in fanning the violence and on whose strength this violence has continued unabated for so many days. During the annual Dusshera rally at Reshimbaug ground in Nagpur, Bhagwat asked, "If we look at the present situation of Manipur, this thing comes to mind. How did this mutual discord suddenly erupt in Manipur, which had been peaceful for almost a decade? 

"Were there extremists from across the border also among those who committed violence? 

"Why and by whom was there an attempt to give a communal form to this mutual conflict between the Manipuri Meitei community and the Kuki community, who were apprehensive about the future of their existence? 

"Who has a vested interest in trying to drag an organization like Sangh, which has been engaged in serving everyone with equal vision for years, into this without any reason? 

"Which foreign powers may be interested in taking advantage of such unrest and instability in Manipur, located between Nagabhoomi and Mizoram in this border area? 

"Does the geopolitics of Southeast Asia also have a role in the causal traditions of these events? 

"Despite a strong government in the country, on whose strength this violence has continued unabated for so many days? 

"Why did this violence break out and continue even though there was a state government that wanted to maintain the peace that had been going on for the last 9 years? 

"In today's situation, when people on both sides of the conflict are seeking peace, what are the forces that can incite hatred and violence by causing an accident as soon as any positive step is seen being taken in that direction?"

The RSS chief made it clear that multidimensional efforts will be required to solve the problem. "For this, while political will, corresponding activism and efficiency are the need of the hour, at the same time, the enlightened leadership of the society will also have to play a special role in bridging the gap of mutual distrust that has arisen due to the unfortunate situation," he said.

"The volunteers of the Sangh are continuously serving everyone and doing relief work at the society level and calling upon the gentlemanly power of the society for peace. The Sangh's efforts are to keep everyone safe, organized, full of harmony and peaceful by accepting everyone as their own, making them understand by paying all kinds of prices. We are proud of the volunteers and the way our workers tried to take care of everyone with a cool mind even in this terrible and disturbing situation in Manipur," he added.

Manipur has witnessed significant turmoil in the wake of ethnic conflicts that commenced on May 3, pitting the Kukis against the Meiteis. Tragically, these clashes have resulted in the loss of approximately 200 lives, with several hundreds sustaining injuries. The root cause of this violence can be traced back to a 'Tribal Solidarity March' held in the hill districts of Manipur. The march was organized in opposition to the Meitei community's quest for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

Initially, in response to the unrest, internet services in the state were banned from May 5 onwards. However, a brief respite occurred on September 23 when the ban was temporarily lifted. Unfortunately, just two days later, the circulation of distressing images depicting the bodies of two missing students went viral, reigniting protests and prompting the re-imposition of the internet services ban.

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