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October 1, 2023: In response to the abduction of seven individuals, including two minors, by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in Lamka, a joint meeting of various Civil Society Organizations in Lamka convened and made the following resolutions:
- Indefinite Shutdown: An indefinite shutdown has been declared in protest against the abductions, commencing from 10 am on October 2, 2023.
- Release of Abductees: The NIA has been urged to release the seven abductees within 48 hours. Failure to do so will result in intensified protests across all hill districts of Manipur.
- Sealing of Boundary Areas: All boundary areas with the Meitei community will be sealed starting from tomorrow. No entry or exit will be allowed within these buffer zones. Furthermore, all government offices will remain closed.
- Exemptions: Essential services such as water supply, press and media, medical facilities, and staff from the Indigenous Tribal Leaders’ Forum (ITLF) are exempted from the shutdown.
The declaration comes after the reported abduction of seven Kuki-Zo individuals, which has raised significant concerns among civil society organizations in Lamka. The indefinite shutdown is a clear expression of the community’s outrage and demands for the immediate release of the abductees.
Ginza Vualzong, representing the Indigenous Tribal Leaders’ Forum (ITLF), has made this announcement. The situation in Lamka remains tense, with residents and organizations closely monitoring developments and awaiting the NIA’s response to their demands.