Independence Day 2021 observed in Manipur amid total shutdown call by several groups

Independence Day 2021 celebration at 1st Manipur Rifles parade ground


(Photo: IFP)

The Manipur government celebrated India's Independence Day 2021 at the 1st Manipur Rifles Parade Ground in Imphal amid the Covid-19 pandemic and the total shutdown call announced by several groups in the state.

Chief Minister N Biren Singh hoisted the National Flag and took salute from the parade at the celebration programme at the 1st MR Ground.

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"Hoisted the National flag and took salute from the march-past contingents at the Independence Day celebration in 1st MR Ground. As we attain 75 years of Independence, may our great Nation continue to shine bright and may this spirit of freedom bring glory to this vibrant Nation," CM Biren tweeted.

Chief Minister N Biren Singh hoisted the National Flag and took salute from the parade at the celebration programme at the 1st MR Ground.

"Hoisted the National flag and took salute from the march-past contingents at the Independence Day celebration in 1st MR Ground. As we attain 75 years of Independence, may our great Nation continue to shine bright and may this spirit of freedom bring glory to this vibrant Nation," CM Biren tweeted.

While the Independence Day was observed across the state low key, several groups, including the United Naga Council (UNC), the Joint Tribe Council, Non-SoO Kuki militant groups, ASUK and CorCom, boycotted India's 75th Independence Day.

The UNC imposed a lightning total shutdown in all Naga areas for 24 hours with effect from August 14 midnight to August 15 midnight. The shutdown was announced in protest against the chief secretary order of August 7  'deliberately imposing' on all village chief/headman/chairman to collect the Indian National Flag from their concern SDOs and to hoist and celebrate the 75th India's Independence Day on August 15 in their respective villages stated a release issued by UNC publcity wing.

The UNC demanded that the chief secretary of Manipur must retract the said order at the earliest possible and warns that it will take its own course of action if the chief secretary failed to do so.

It is unprecedented that the state government and district administrations are resorting to such a cheap tactics to further suppress the political aspiration of Naga people and decades-long struggle for achieving enduring peace in the region, it added.

The UNC stated that the Naga people vehemently condemned the provocative action of state security forces in dishonoring the sanctity of the Naga National Flag and the people of Chandel district in particular on the eve of Independence Day.

It also mentioned in a release that the ransacking of Naga People Organization (NPO), office Senapati and Senapati District Students' Association (SDSA) office and snatching away of Naga Flag by the Assam Riffle is tantamount to insulting the Naga people.

In pursuance to the directives of the United Naga Council (UNC), the joint tribe councils, including Zeme Naga Council, Rongmei Naga Council, Liangmai Naga Council and Inpui Naga Union, imposed 24-hour total shutdown in Tamenglong district, effective from midnight of August 14 to midnight of August 15.

The decision to this effect was taken to oppose the move of the Manipur government that asked all the Naga villages to hoist the Indian tricolour national flag against the wishes of the people, the joint tribe council stated in a release.

Meanwhile, the non-SoO Kuki National Front (KNF) also boycotted India's 75th Independence Day and declared a total shutdown in all Kuki inhabited areas of Manipur from midnight of August 14 till 6 pm of August 15. The KNF stated in a release that the Government of India has been ignoring the inherent rights of the Kukis and their demands for a separate state. The Kukis are distinct indigenous people in the land of their settlement, it stated.

The proscribed umbrella organisation Coordination Committee (CorCom) called for a total shutdown in the state from 1 am till 6.30 pm on August 15 and boycotted the Independence Day celebration in Manipur.

Another proscribed umbrella organisation Alliance for Socialist Unity, Kangleipak (ASUK) also imposed total shutdown across the state on August 15 from 6 am to 5 pm as a form of peaceful non-cooperation against Independence Day celebrations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Published:Aug. 15, 2021, 3 p.m.

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