From our Staff Correspondent
Dibrugarh, Sept 22: Different ethnic tribal groups, predomintly of Manipur comprising of Kuki – Chin – Mizo , who are residing in Dibrugarh in good numbers, recently gathered together in the Parish Hall of the Catholic Church and conducted prayers in view of the unyielding and continued crisis in the State of Manipur.
The present crisis and unrest in the tribal hill districts of Manipur sparked off strong violent repercussions from the tribal communities when the Manipur State Legislative Assembly in its emergency session passed the three contentious Bills, mely, Protection of Manipur People’s Bill 2015, Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms (Seventh Amendment) Bill 2015 and Manipur Shop and Establishments (Second Amendment) Bill 2015, on 31, August 2015, following the pressing demand for introduction of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) system spearheaded by the Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit System (JCILPS).
Protesting vehemently against passing of the Bills the three main tribal bodies of the State — the Kuki Students’ Organization, the All ga Students’ Association of Manipur and the All Tribal Students’ Union Manipur, jointly called for a complete 12-hour bandh on August 1 in all the hill districts of the State which unfortutely soon went out of control that resulted in the senseless killing of four persons on the spot leaving behind several of them critically injured and some later succumbed to their injuries. The incidents subsequently flared up into a movement demanding for repeal of the bills and separate administrative setup for the tribal people.
The programme was organized to condemn the recent atrocities on the people of their community in Manipur wherein nine lives were lost and several others were maimed or seriously injured, besides properties worth crores of rupees were burnt into ashes. Fearing imminent danger and more violence which may at any time turn into a commul strife, Dr. Lamkholal Doungel, who chaired the prayer programme appealed to the congregation to look for God’s guidance and pray for peaceful and permanent solution of the crisis, saying that “in this time of crisis and agony we are with our brethren of Manipur”.
Following the formal greetings from Mangcha Haokip, the programme formally started with invocation prayer by Donga and singing of meaningful Christian hymns led by H.Lalhmangaiha. Upa.L.ngthiankham conducted the condolence prayer for the departed souls. Rev. Lalawmpuia, pastor of the Dibrugarh Pastorate, Presbyterian Church of India, shared a brief inspiring message from the Bible and stressed on the need to “pray together in order to stay together.” Additiol Superintendent of Police, Tinsukia, Lamhao Doungel, Assistant Professor, DHSK College, Sangboi Doungel, an Evangelist, Chullova Pachau, were few among a host of prominent speakers who deeply dealt essentially on the theme ‘United we stand, divided we fall.’