Manipur: 60 dead bodies airlifted from morgues after 7 months of violence

IMPHAL | Updated: 14 December, 2023 8:01 pm IST
The deceased have been kept in trucks, preparing to be buried (Photo from ITLF)

IMPHAL: Bodies of 60 Kuki people killed in the ethnic violence in Manipur were airlifted from morgues at Imphal hospitals and delivered to two hill districts of Kangpokpi and Churachandpur on Thursday.

The deceased were kept at the Jawaharlal Nehru Institute of Medical Sciences (JNIMS) and the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS). They were airlifted amid tight security arrangements put in place by the Manipur Police and the Indian Army’s Assam Rifles unit.

 

According to representatives of Kuki organisations, till 2:30 pm, 41 of the bodies were transported to Churachandpur at the Assam Rifles’ helipad in four trips. The other 19 bodies were shifted to Motbung in Kangpokpi.

Presently, a shutdown has been declared in Kangpokpi by the Committee on Tribal Unity (COTU), a tribal civil society in Manipur. “The COTU would like to inform the general public that there will be a 12-hour Total Shutdown within Sadar Hills- Kangpokpi w.e.f. 15 (Friday) 5 AM upto 5 PM for the said funeral services and appeals to the general public to cooperate. However, emergency services and funeral parties are exempted from the purview,” said COTU in a press statement.

The civil society further appreciated the Supreme Court in the statement, for intervening and “understanding the sentiments” of the Kuki-Zo community.

Press Communique of the COTU accessed by The New Indian

Earlier in August, the SC had formed a committee comprising three former High Court judges — Gita Mittal, Shalini Joshi and Asha Menon — to investigate into concerns of remedial measures, compensation and rehabilitation of the violence-affected people of the state.

Subsequently, the apex court had also issued directives to carry out appropriate funeral rites of the ones killed in the violence by December 11. The directive also included the bodies of the 88 who have yet to be claimed by a family member.

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