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KIM Urges PM Modi To Withdraw Cases Against Kuki Academics

Ethnic clashes between the Kuki and Meitei communities broke out in the state on May 3, and have been continuing for over three months, leading to the deaths of over 160 people.

Kuki community protest in Chennai
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Raising concern over FIRs filed against Kuki academics, the apex body of the community in Manipur wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi urging him to take steps to withdraw the cases.

In a memorandum to the Prime Minister, the Kuki Inpi Manipur (KIM) alleged that several scholars, writers and leaders of the community are under constant threat and harassment, reported PTI.

"The results of research works, academic engagement and exercise of freedom of speech are responded with FIR and cases. Manipur police have booked two Kuki Assistant Professors of Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) and a retired Colonel for the book they had edited and authored on the Anglo-Kuki War 1917-19," it said, as per the report.

"Initiating legal suit against Kuki scholars is a clear reflection of the bleak state of academic freedom in India. The charges against our scholars are politically motivated, an attempt to erase Kuki history. Besides, other Kuki leaders, social activists, students' organisation and scholars who write and speak for the Kukis on different platforms are being booked in an attempt to gag and stifle any voices from the Kukis," it added.

KIM alleged such cases are part of a ploy to keep the Kukis under subjugation, it said.

"Things which are purely academics should be responded with the same approach and academic freedom which plays a vital role in strengthening democratic society should be protected," it said.

The KIM demanded that the cases filed against writers, scholars, academicians and leaders of the community on the basis of complaints by Meiteis with "malicious intents" be withdrawn immediately, it mentioned.

It also urged the prime minister to act against "Valley Based Insurgency Groups (VBIGs)", their frontal organisations and politicians who have nexus with them, it said.

Ethnic clashes between the Kuki and Meitei communities broke out in the state on May 3, and have been continuing for over three months, leading to the deaths of over 160 people.

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