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Manipur violence: Govt issues shoot at sight orders for ‘extreme cases’

Imphal: Manipur government on Thursday issued a shoot at sight order in “extreme cases” to contain spiraling violence in the state between tribal and the majority Meitei community which has displaced over 9,000 people from their villages.

The order issued on behalf of the Governor said ‘shoot at sight’ could be resorted to when persuasion, warning and reasonable force “have been exhausted and the situation could not be controlled”.

The notification signed by the Commissioner (Home) of the state government was issued under provisions of the criminal procedure code 1973.

Fifty-five columns of the Army and Assam Rifles had to be deployed to contain widespread rioting that broke out across Manipur between tribals and the majority Meitei community, displacing over 9,000 people.

The Army also kept some 14 columns on standby for deployment in case the situation flared up once again, a defence spokesperson said.

The Centre, which is monitoring the situation in Manipur, also dispatched teams of the Rapid Action Force (RAF), a specialised force to handle riots, for deployment in violence-hit areas of the Northeastern state.

Sources said the force landed at Imphal airport this evening.

Clashes broke out on Wednesday which intensified overnight with counter-attacks being mounted by rival communities in retaliation to earlier attacks, after Naga and Kuki tribals organised a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ to protest moves to give scheduled tribe status to the majority Metei community.