UCM reiterates stand on territorial integrity

IMPHAL, 15th Sep: Rich tributes were paid to the martyrs of June 18 uprising at Kekrupat as part of the customary ritual of offering annual homage to departed souls during the Meetei lunar month of Langban, on Sunday.
Speaking to media persons on the sidelines of the tribute event, United Committee Manipur (UCM) president Sunil Karam asserted that the committee will fight against any clause in the Indo-Naga peace accord solution that may affect the state’s territory and integrity.
There are strong speculations of the Indo-Naga peace accord arriving at a solution within the month of October. Since there is suspicion of the final agreement affecting the state’s integrity, UCM will fight tooth and nail against any such arrangements, he said and added that the committee will organise a public meet at Lamyanba Shanglen, Palace Compound on Thursday to discuss the possible impact and course of action to fight any unwanted outcomes. So far, the Centre has been keeping secret the 16-point Framework Agreement signed with NSCN-IM. While RN Ravi spoke of wrapping up the peace deal possibly by October, NSCN-IM is also hinting about an agreement leaving behind the demand for separate flag and constitution. Since the situation has taken a grave turn, UCM sees it necessary to hold the public convention to discuss the matter, he said.
Regarding Sunday’s ritual, Sunil said that the homage was paid to the 18 martyrs, who sacrificed the lives for the integrity of the state and to remind the people of their sacrifice. On the other hand, Centre has been remaining silent to the multiple correspondences sent by UCM to the Prime Minister and Centre’s interlocutor. In such a situation, it is necessary to show the Centre that people of the state are united against any threat to the state’s territory and integrity, he added.
UCM secretary general Khuraijam Athouba said that RN Ravi had lauded Naga organisations for their unity and organised approach towards a common cause. He had also spoken about the lack of unity among the Meeteis. But one should know that NSCN-IM rejected the Shillong Accord and put its efforts to build by a ‘unique history’ of Nagas based on its new ideology of Naga aspiration and uniting several smaller communities into a single body called Naga. However, UCM and people of Manipur will never accept such arrangements.
Unfortunately, the Centre is riding on NSCN-IM to create enmity among the different indigenous communities of the state and drive wedge between Naga and Meetei. As such, there is strong need for all the communities in the state to stand united against such policies and safeguard the integrity and territory of the state, he said.
He then appealed to people of all communities in the state to attend the September 19 public convention.

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