New Delhi: As Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke on the incident of women being paraded naked in Manipur, the Congress on Thursday said this was ‘too little too late’ and that ‘mere words won’t do anymore’. Attacking PM Modi, Congress general secretary Jairam Ramesh said after more than 1800 hours of an ‘incomprehensible and unforgivable silence’, the prime minister finally spoke on Manipur for a sum total of 30 seconds. He also accused him of playing politics by mentioning Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh while ‘breaking his silence’ on the northeastern state.
“The PM tried to divert attention from the colossal governance failures and the humanitarian tragedy in Manipur by equating crimes against women in other states, especially those governed by the opposition while ignoring atrocities on women in states like Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, and Gujarat,” Jairam Ramesh said.
The prime minister completely sidestepped the issue of the ongoing ethnic conflict in Manipur, the Congress leader alleged in a long Twitter post.
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Ahead of the Monsoon session of Parliament on Thursday, Prime Minister Modi said the Manipur incident has ‘shamed’ 140 crore Indians, asserting that the law will act with its full might and no guilty will be spared. He also requested all chief ministers to further strengthen the law and order mechanism in their respective states, especially to protect women and to take most stringent action.
He mentioned states such as Congress-ruled Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh while calling for boosting law and order, and protecting women.
“I want to assure the people of the country that no guilty will be spared. What has happened to these daughters of Manipur can never be forgiven,” he said.
“My heart is full of pain and anger,” Prime Minister Modi told reporters.
In his Twitter post, Ramesh said, “He (Modi) has made no appeal for peace, nor asked for the chief minister of Manipur to step down. While he has commented on this one video that has surfaced, this is only one example of the hundreds of incidents of barbaric violence in the state of Manipur.”
He alleged that the prime minister tried to equate systemic and ongoing violence in Manipur with cases of crimes against women in other states.
Perpetrators of such “crimes have been arrested in Congress-governed states within 24 hours. In Manipur, it took 15 days to register an FIR against unknown persons and today, 64 days later, for the chief minister of Manipur (N Biren Singh) to claim that arrests have been made,” Ramesh said.
He asserted that there has been a complete and total collapse of law and order and administration in Manipur. “This is too little too late. Mere words won’t do anymore. Actions must speak louder,” the Congress leader said and added that the prime minister and the home minister (Amit Shah) cannot escape accountability.
After more than 1800 hours of an incomprehensible and unforgivable silence, the Prime Minister finally spoke on Manipur for a sum total of 30 seconds. After which, the PM tried to divert attention from the colossal governance failures and the humanitarian tragedy in Manipur by…
— Jairam Ramesh (@Jairam_Ramesh) July 20, 2023
“The chief minister of Manipur should step down immediately. INDIA (opposition coalition) will continue to demand answers to ensure a path towards peace and reconciliation in Manipur,” he said.
Tension mounts in Manipur after video shows women being paraded naked
Tension has mounted in the northeastern state after a May 4 video surfaced on Wednesday showing two women from one of the warring communities in Manipur being paraded naked by a mob from the other side. The Manipur Police on Thursday arrested one of the main accused who was seen in the video.
Manipur has been witnessing ethnic clashes since May 3 between the majority Meitei community, concentrated in the Imphal valley, and the tribal Kukis, occupying the hills. Over 160 people have been killed in the violence so far.
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