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Imphal, May 31 – Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday visited two more violence-hit districts in Manipur and held a series of peace talks with the leaders of various civil society organisations and security officials.
Officials in Imphal said that Shah on Wednesday visited the border town of Moreh in Tengnoupal district, and Kangpokpi district. Both the districts have been impacted by the ethnic violence that has ravaged the state since May 3, leaving at least 75 dead and over 300 injured.
As Shah visited there, thousands of men and women greeted the Home Minister in both the districts.
Moreh, 110 km from the state capital Imphal, is one of the oldest international trade points in India along the border with Myanmar, with the city of Tamu on the other side of the border.
The India-Myanmar Friendship Bridge in Moreh connects India to Kalewa in Myanmar’s Sagaing Division.
Many communities, including Tamils, Nepali, Bihari, Rajasthani, Bengali, Punjabi, besides Manipur’s Meitei and Kuki communities, have been living together for many years in this border town with neighbouring Myanmar.
However, after the ethnic violence began on May 3, thousands of people of all communities left the border town and took shelter in several areas, including inside Myanmar, after their houses were set afire.
The border town is one of the most affected areas in the recent ethnic hostilities.
During his visit to the two districts, Shah met the affected families and also attended peace talks.
Meanwhile, sporadic firing between security forces and suspected militants were reported from different districts.
An exchange of fire between the security forces and the suspected militants took place at Litanpokpi village in Imphal East district.
A civilian was injured in the gun battle. Incidents of gunfight between militants and security forces were also reported from Sugnu in Kakching district on Tuesday night.
Shah, who arrived in Imphal on a three-day visit to Manipur on Monday night, also held an hour-long closed-door discussion in Churachandpur on Tuesday with various tribal leaders, intellectuals and prominent tribal citizens, wherein he listened to their views on restoring normalcy in the state.
The Home Minister held over 12 meetings with security officials, civil society organisations including women bodies tribal leaders, intellectuals and retired security officials in Imphal on Tuesday.
He also held an all-party meeting and told the leaders that he directed the concerned security officials to strictly deal with any activity disturbing peace in the northeastern state.
Union Minister of State for Home Nityanand Rai, BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra, Home Secretary A.K. Bhalla, Director General of Assam Rifles Lt. Gen. Pradeep Chandran Nair, Director of Intelligence Bureau Tapan Kumar Deka, Director General of Manipur Police P. Doungel and other Central and state government officials were present at the meetings.