After visiting relief camps in Manipur, Rahul Gandhi tells PM Modi to do the same

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi during his visit to Churachandpur relief camp in Manipur on Monday. Photo: PTI

Imphal: Congress leader Rahul Gandhi visited Manipur on Monday and requested Prime Minister Narendra Modi to come to the ethnic strife-affected state to offer some solace to the people, while asserting his party's support to any government move to bring back peace.
Describing what has happened in Manipur as a "tremendous tragedy", Gandhi said it is his third visit to Manipur since the violence began in May last year but witnessed "no improvement in the situation".

The Congress leader was on a day-long visit to Manipur where ethnic violence between Meitei and Kuki communities claimed more than 200 lives since May last year. He visited three relief camps in different districts of the BJP-ruled state and interacted with the inmates belonging to both the warring ethnic groups who were displaced by the violence.

"The PM should have visited the state long back. It is important that he visit Manipur. I request him to come to Manipur and try and understand what is happening here... It will comfort the people. Congress is ready to support anything that would improve the situation," the Raebareli MP told a press conference here.

This is the third time I come here since the problem started. It has been a tremendous tragedy. I was expecting some improvement in the situation. But I was quite disappointed to see that the situation is still nowhere near where it should be," he said.

Congress MP Rahul Gandhi meets people affected by the Manipur violence during his visit to a relief camp in Moirang on Monday. Photo: PTI

Gandhi had visited Manipur weeks after ethnic violence broke out in Manipur on May 3 last year. He also began his 'Bharat Jodo Nyay Yatra' from the state in January 2024.

This is his first visit to Manipur after becoming the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha and after the Congress won both Lok Sabha seats in the state.

Gandhi said he came to the state to listen to the woes of the violence-hit people and build confidence in them and as an opposition leader, he would pressure the government so that it acts.
"I want to tell all the people of Manipur (that) I came here as your brother, as somebody who wants to help you, wants to work with you to bring back peace in Manipur. I am ready to do whatever I can, Congress party is ready to do whatever it can to bring back peace here," he said.

Stating that he had never seen anywhere in India what is going on in Manipur, Gandhi asserted that violence and hatred are not going to get any solution, while respect and interaction can.

Rahul Gandhi interacts with people in a relief camp at Moirang, Manipur on Monday. Photo: PTI

The state is completely split in two and it is a tragedy for everybody involved. The entire state is suffering. If we start to think about peace and affection, it will be a very very big step for Manipur," the Congress leader said.

Gandhi said that whenever the people of Manipur want, he and his party will be available. “Indian government and everybody who considers himself a patriot must embrace the people of Manipur," said the Congress leader who also met Governor Anusuiya Uikey before holding the press conference.
"We expressed to the governor that we would like to help in whatever way we can. We also expressed our displeasure. We are not happy with the progress that has taken place here. I don't want to politicize the issue, it is not my intention," Gandhi said.

Earlier in the day, he visited relief camps in Jiribam, Churachandpur and Bishnupur districts of Manipur. State Congress president Keisham Meghachandra said in Jiribam that the inmates told Gandhi about the experiences they went through.

"He also enquired about what they need. One girl told Gandhi that neither the Prime Minister nor the chief minister had come to visit them. She also urged Gandhi to place the matter in Parliament," Meghachandra said. "Rahul Gandhi's visit aims at providing support to people and to assess the situation on the ground. His visit reflects the party's commitment to address the concerns of those affected by the recent violence," Meghachandra said.

After visiting the relief camps, Gandhi called on Governor Anusuiya Uikey in Raj Bhavan here and held deliberations for around 45 minutes.

The Congress leader also visited a camp of internally displaced people who had taken shelter at Thalain in Cachar district of Assam following the violence in neighbouring Manipur and interacted with them.

Gandhi said that he stands by the people of Assam and is their 'soldier in Parliament'. In a post on X, he urged the Centre to extend all help to the flood-affected Assam. The state needs a 'comprehensive and compassionate vision-relief, rehabilitation and compensation in the short term, and a pan-Northeast water management authority to do everything necessary to control floods in the long term', he said.

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