The Supreme Court on Wednesday heard petitions on the violence that broke out in Manipur and asked the state government to file a fresh status report on relief, security, rehabilitation of affected persons.
It further said that it will ensure that the political executive does not turn a blind eye to the law and order situation in Manipur, and asked the state government to file a fresh status report on measures taken for security and relief and rehabilitation of the violence-hit people.
#SupremeCourt to hear a slew of petitions seeking the intervention of the top court in the #ManipurViolence which erupted recently...SC will also hear a plea by Manipur Bar Association which has urged SC to establish a dedicated committee to conduct a thorough investigation into… pic.twitter.com/W1y2czyTzt— Bar & Bench (@barandbench) May 17, 2023
Meanwhile, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the apex court that the intention is to restore peace in the state. He said a total of 315 relief camps manned by district police and CAPF have been established. The state government has sanctioned a contingency fund of Rs 3 crores for relief measures. Close to 46,000 people have received help so far, SG Mehta added.
According to a report by Bar and Bench, the Supreme Court also took a strong view against the Manipur High Court’s order asking the state government to submit the recommendation to give Scheduled Tribe (ST) status to the Meetei/Meitei community.
"We have to stay the order of the Manipur High Court. It is completely factually wrong and we gave time to Justice Muralidharan to remedy his error and he did not. We have to take a strong view against it now. It is clear if High Court judges do not follow constitution bench judgments then what should we do.. it is very clear," the CJI remarked, as per the report.
In March this year, Justice MV Muralidharan of the Manipur High Court had ordered the Manipur government to “consider inclusion of the Meetei/Meitei community in the Scheduled Tribe list, expeditiously, preferably within a period four weeks” from the date of the order, which led to clashes between tribal and non-tribal communities leading to loss of lives.
The top court took into account security apprehensions of Kuki and other tribal communities in the state and ordered that the chief secretary and his security advisor will assess and take steps to ensure “peace and tranquillity” in the villages referred to by tribals. It said that tribals can move the division bench of the Manipur High Court with their grievances on the quota issue.
It asked the state government to file a fresh status report on relief, security, and rehabilitation measures to help violence-hit persons. The state government, in its status report, said it took measures to provide relief to affected persons and over 46,000 people have been rescued and more than 3,000 stranded ones have been taken to airports to enable them to leave the state.
More than 50 people have been killed in violent clashes between tribals living in the Manipur hills and the majority Meitei community residing in the Imphal Valley over the latter's demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
Earlier, the top court had expressed concern over the huge loss of life and property in the state and asked the Centre and the Manipur government to step up relief and rehabilitation efforts for those hit by ethnic violence in the north-eastern state, besides protecting places of worship, many of which were targeted during the mayhem.
(With inputs from PTI)