Apex court cannot be used as platform to escalate tension in Manipur: SC

The apex court cannot be used as platform to escalate tension in Manipur, the Supreme Court on Monday said while making it clear that it cannot take the law and order apparatus in its hand to douse the violence.

A bench of Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice PS Narasimha said at most it can give directions to the authorities to make the situation better and for that it needs assistance of different groups and positive suggestions.

“Give us some positive suggestions by Tuesday to make the situation better and we will ask the Centre and the Manipur government to look into it”, the bench told different groups of Manipur before it, as it took on record the status report filed by the state chief secretary on the situation prevailing in the violence-hit state.

The top court also asked Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Manipur government, to take instructions on a circular issued in June, by which it had asked state government employees to report to duty or face a pay cut.

On July 3, the top court had directed the Manipur government to file an updated status report detailing steps taken for rehabilitation, improving the law and order situation and recovery of arms in the ethnic violence-hit state.

At least 150 people have been killed and several hundred injured since ethnic violence broke out in the state on May 3, when a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.

Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley. Tribal Nagas and Kukis constitute another 40 per cent of the population and reside in the hill districts.

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