Manipur violence: Mirabai Chanu and others write letter to Home Minister, threaten to return medals
"It is pertinent to mention that we shall surrender our awards in case your goodself fails to do so," the letter written by 13 present and former Manipur sportspersons said to the Home Minister.
On Tuesday, 30th May, 13 sportspersons from Manipur penned a stern letter to the Home Ministry, warning that they would return their medals if the government failed to bring order to the state of Manipur which currently is in amidst chaos.
The signatories of the letter titled 'Memorandum submitted by International Sports Medalists and Awardees of the State, Manipur, India' include Khel Ratna, Padma Shri, and Olympic medallist Mirabai Chanu (Weightlifting), Dhyanchand Awardee Anita Chanu (Weightlifting), Padma Shri Kunjarani Devi (Weightlifting), Arjuna Awardee Sarita Devi (Boxer), Padma Shri and Arjuna Awardee Oinam Bembem Devi (Football), Arjuna Awardee Soniya Chanu (Weightlifter), Arjuna Awardee Bimoljit Singh (Wushu), Arjuna Awardee Sandhyarani Devi (Wushu), Arjuna Awardee Sanathoi Devi (Wushu), Arjuna Awardee Shushila Devi (Judo), Arjuna Awardee Suranjoy Singh (Boxing), Arjuna Awardee Sanamacha Chanu (Boxing), and Dronacharya Awardee Ibomcha Singh (Boxing).
The writers of the letter, consisting of present and former eminent sportspersons from the sport-loving state, underline eight demands which suggest to end the ongoing conflict in Manipur. The points made in the memorandum are as follows:
- To revoke the Suspension of Operation (SoO) agreement with Kuki Militant groups.
- Restore peace and normalcy at the earliest.
- To protect unity and integrity of the State Manipur.
- The demand to disintegrate Manipur is not acceptable under any circumstances.
- Meeteis are allowed to settle only in the valley which constitutes just about 10 percent of the total geographical area of Manipur as such where the Meeteis would settle after some years if the present system continues. So to allow Meeteis to settle at hill's of our State Manipur.
- To not accept the demand to disintegrate Manipur.
- To deport illegal immigrants to their respective countries.
- The National Highway-2 has been blocked for weeks at several location resulting in price rise of essential commodities and severely affecting common people. However, State and Central Governments cannot do anything in this regard, it is very unfortunate. So kindly unblock the National Highway-2 at the earliest.
Furthermore, the letter goes on to state, "It is pertinent to mention that we shall surrender our awards in case your goodself fails to do so."
Home Minister Amit Shah is presently at Manipur, chairing meetings with several local political leaders as well as the armed forces to maintain peace and attain normalcy at the earliest.
"Reviewed the security situation in Manipur in a meeting with senior officials of the Manipur Police, CAPFs and the Indian Army in Imphal. Peace and prosperity of Manipur is our top priority, instructed them to strictly deal with any activities disturbing the peace," he said in a tweet.
Clashes between two communities, Kuki and Meetei, broke out on May 3 after the former protested against the latter's demand to achieve ST (Scheduled Tribe) status.