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Tuesday, September 21, 2021

Want justice for victims of 1993 ‘genocide’ before Naga peace deal is finalised: Kuki body

On September 13, 1993, as many as 115 Kuki villagers, including women and children, were allegedly killed by the armed cadres of the NSCN-IM in a single day in different places of Tamenglong and the erstwhile Senapati district.

Written by Jimmy Leivon | Imphal |
Updated: September 13, 2021 10:41:15 pm
Kuki, ManipurKuki groups observe a 'black day' on September 13 last year. There were no major events held on the day this year due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. However, mass prayers were held in Kuki villages. (Express file photo by Jimmy Leivon)

The Kuki Inpi Manipur (KIM), the apex body of the Kuki tribe, on Monday said that the central and state governments should ensure that the victims of the “Kuki genocide”, which was allegedly perpetrated by members of NSCN-IM from 1992 to 1997, should get justice before the Naga peace deal is finalised.

Representatives of the Kuki civil bodies also met Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh demanding justice for the victims.

Hemzathang Khongsai, vice-president of KIM, said that from 1992 to 1997, around 1,000 innocent Kukis, including women and children, were allegedly killed and 300 Kuki villages uprooted by the NSCN-IM, rendering over 1 lakh villagers refugees in their own land.

On September 13, 1993, as many as 115 Kuki villagers, including women and children, were allegedly killed by the armed cadres of the NSCN-IM in a single day in different places of Tamenglong and the erstwhile Senapati district. The incident is known as the “Joupi Massacre”.

The Kuki community has been observing September 13 as ‘Sahnit Ni’ (Kuki Black Day) in remembrance of the victims killed during the clashes.

“This day, September 13, is the bloodiest and darkest in the history of the Kuki tribe. It is the day when members of the tribe recount the horror of those mass killings. The central and state governments have not done much. Justice has remained elusive? What was the fault of the victims of that ethnic cleansing? They were targeted because they were Kukis,” said Khongsai.

Khongsai said KIM has been urging the Centre and the state to give justice to the victims before any final agreement is reached regarding the Naga peace deal.

“Sadly, the government is still silent on the matter. We will continue our fight against injustice and oppression with a renewed fervour until there is justice,” he said.

Khongsai said this September 13 was different. There were no events on the day due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis. However, mass prayers were held in Kuki villages.

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