KUNNUR: Amidst the ongoing turmoil and ethnic clashes in the violence-hit state of Manipur, 23 students from the Kuki community, including 10 girls, have found sanctuary at Kannur University in Kerala to continue their higher education. These students, who faced disruptions in their studies due to the unrest in Manipur since May 3, received a warm welcome upon their arrival at the university, which has made special arrangements to accommodate them.
The move to provide refuge and educational opportunities for the affected students comes after a decision was taken during a syndicate meeting held on August 7 at Kannur University. The meeting aimed to grant admission to students impacted by the violence in Manipur, whether at the university's campuses or affiliated colleges.
Pramod Vellachal, a syndicate member of the university, stated, "These students learned about our university and the educational facilities in Kerala through Malayali teachers and lecturers working in Manipur." It is expected that more violence-affected students from Manipur will arrive at Kannur University in the coming days, seeking to continue their studies in a more stable environment away from the unrest in their home state.
The warm reception and educational support provided by Kannur University offer hope and opportunities for these students to pursue their dreams and aspirations despite the challenges they have faced due to the violence in Manipur.
Meanwhile, normal life was hit across Manipur's Imphal valley districts on Wednesday, the second day of the 48-hour statewide shutdown called by Meira Paibis, a collective of Meitei women, and five local clubs, demanding unconditional release of five "village defence volunteers" arrested by police, officials said.
For the second day, educational institutions, markets, banks and commercial establishments remained closed, while attendance in government offices was negligible and a few vehicles plied on the roads, they said.
Across all the five districts of Imphal Valley, women in large numbers blocked roads and raised slogans demanding the release of the youths.
Protesters blamed the state government of Manipur and police for failing to tackle the law and order in the hill areas.
On Saturday, police arrested five youths for carrying sophisticated weapons and donning camouflage uniforms.
In a statement, police said the five had been produced before the judicial magistrate and remanded to police custody.