Manipur party leaders fast unto death in protest against Naga economic blockade

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Imphal, June 8 (ANI): Demanding the lifting of a blockade of national highways linking Manipur with the rest of the country, leaders of the Manipur People's Party (MPP) commenced an indefinite hunger strike here on Monday.

A memorandum has also been sent to the central government to resolve the issue.

MPP president and a former minister Nimaichand Luwang and Dr. S. Dhananjay Singh declared that they would fast unto death till their demands are met.

"We cannot wait anymore. Now this is the last effort that Manipur People Party wants the whole attention of the central government because this government has failed to tackle the issue. Now it is the central government to handle the issue directly," said Luwang.

Luwang also said the activists of National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN-IM) are operating with arms and their activities in Manipur should be stopped.

"This tension between different communities living in Manipur. The gap is widened like anything. Now for the betterment of the state and to bring a communal and harmonious living and emotional integration, we want that NSCN-IM leader Muivah should be removed from Manipur," said Luwang.

On May 6, state police and supporters of an ethnic Naga leaders clashed at Mao Gate in Senapati District leaving two students dead and 50 to 60 others injured.

The people were protesting against a state government decision not to allow Muivah to visit his ancestral village of Somdal.

The Central Government said it is looking forward to taking talks with the NSCN-IM leadership forward.

The NSCN-IM had agreed to a ceasefire in August 1997 and launched a peace process with the Central Government to bring an end to the longest-running insurgency in India.

It has participated in several rounds of talks with central officials since the start of the ceasefire. (ANI)

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