In the latest outbreak of violence in Manipur's Kangpokpi district on Monday, two individuals lost their lives in a clash between two opposing groups. The police reported that the incident occurred in the vicinity of Haraothel and Kobsha villages, though the exact trigger remains unclear, as reported by PTI.
A tribal organization alleged that the Kuki-Zo community faced an unprovoked attack, leading them to declare a "shutdown" in the district. The region has been marked by multiple gunfights among armed villagers, stemming from ethnic tensions between the Meitei and Kuki communities that emerged in early May.
To address the escalating situation, additional security forces have been deployed in the area, and efforts are underway to apprehend those involved in the incident, according to a police official.
Condemning the perceived unprovoked attack on the Kuki-Zo community, the Committee on Tribal Unity (COTU) based in Kangpokpi declared an "emergency shutdown" in the district. The COTU, during a meeting, also urged the government to establish separate administration arrangements for tribals.
The backdrop to this recent violence dates back to May 3, when ethnic tensions intensified following a 'Tribal Solidarity March' organized in the hill districts. The march aimed to protest against the Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. Since then, the region has witnessed over 180 fatalities.
Manipur's demographic composition reveals that Meiteis constitute approximately 53 percent of the population, predominantly residing in the Imphal Valley. In contrast, tribals, including Nagas and Kukis, make up 40 percent of the population and primarily inhabit the hill districts.