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'Restore Peace': Manipur Athletes Threaten To Return Medals In Letter To Amit Shah

As part of his mission to broker a lasting peace, Amit Shah Tuesday met a cross section of Kuki and Meitei leaders and civil society groups besides top security officers to seek a solution to the spate of ethnic clashes which has plagued the state

Amit Shah meets women leaders from Manipur
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As Manipur continues to witness multiple rounds of violence, eleven sports personalities from the state, including Olympians, have written to Home Minister Amit Shah, urging him to find a solution to the ongoing crisis in the state.

Among the signatories of the letter was Olympic medalist Mirabai Chanu who also warned they would return their awards and medals if "peace and normalcy" are not restored at the earliest.

The other signatories of the letter - Padma Award winner weightlifter Kunjarani Devi, former Indian woman football team captain Bem Bem Devi and Boxer L Sarita Devi among others - have also demanded the unblocking of the National Highway-2.

The points in the memorandum include - to revoke the Suspension of Operation (SoO) agreement with the Kuki Militant groups, restore peace and normalcy at the earliest, to protect unity and integrity of the State Manipur, discarding the demand to disintegrate Manipur under any circumstances, allowing Meeteis to settle in the hills, to deport illegal immigrants to their respective countries among others, according to a report by Imphal Free Press.

“We have won laurels for the country. Meiteis have immensely contributed to the sports field. Even after that, we feel we have no respect in anyone's eyes. If our demands are not met, we will return the medals," said boxer L Sarita Devi.

The 'warning' came a day ahead of Union Home Minister Amit Shah's scheduled visit to the violence-hit state. As part of his mission to broker a lasting peace, Amit Shah Tuesday met a cross section of Kuki and Meitei leaders and civil society groups besides top security officers to seek a solution to the spate of ethnic clashes which has plagued the state.

Shah on Tuesday also visited Churachandpur, the scene of some of the worst rioting in the recent ethnic conflict which broke out in Manipur earlier to hold talks with Kuki leaders.

He also held a series of discussions with different Meitei groups, women and prominent personalities earlier during the day in Imphal before flying to Kuki-dominated Churachandpur district.

Later in the night, he also held an all party meeting and a meeting with the top brass of central police forces, Manipur police and the army and ask them to ensure peace. 

(With inputs from PTI)

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