Manipur withdraws earlier order to turn away Myanmar refugees
The Manipur government has withdrawn an earlier order directing local authorities to turn away people from Myanmar trying to seek refuge in the state, NDTV reported. The controversial order, sent out on March 26, had asked the authorities of five districts not to set up camps to provide food and shelter to the refugees. Here are more details on this.
Letter was sent to DCs of five districts on Friday
In its March 26 letter, the Manipur government had instructed the Deputy Commissioners of five districts - Chandel, Tengnoupal, Kamjong, Ukhrul, and Churachandpur - to ensure that Aadhaar enrollment was stopped and the kits used in the procedure were taken into safe custody. The officials had even been asked to submit an 'action taken report' on the matter by today.
Ironically, government assured 'all humanitarian steps'
The government had, however, assured that it has been taking "all humanitarian steps," including "taking them (refugees) to Imphal, to treat the injured Myanmarese nationals." It added, "The state government continues to provide all aid."
The new letter was issued on Monday
The State Home Department withdrew the order on Monday writing to the same officials on the matter. It said the original letter has been "misconstrued and interpreted differently." "In order to avoid this misunderstanding I am directed to convey the decision of the government that it has decided to withdraw the letter dated 26.03.2021 mentioned above," said Special Home Secretary to the state government.
Meanwhile, Mizoram comes forward to help refugees
The action initiated by the Manipur government is in sharp contrast with its neighboring state, Mizoram, where Chief Minister Zoramthanga had said last week that it was his government's duty to provide free food and shelter to the people coming from Myanmar. In fact, more than 1,000 Myanmar nationals are reported to have entered Mizoram seeking shelter in the state.
A brief about the situation in Myanmar
India has been expecting refugees from Myanmar since the neighboring country's military took control of it in a coup in February, detaining State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi and other political leaders as well as cracking down on protesters. Hundreds of people, including children, have been killed by the security forces in Myanmar. The violence has triggered outrage across the globe.