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Current Affairs

Kuki insurgency

Date: 09 March 2022 Tags: Miscellaneous

Issue

Following intervention of Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Kuki insurgent groups have supported the BJP in Manipur Assembly elections.

 

Background

The insurgent group is active in northeast as well as across the border in Myanmar.

 

Details

  • The Kuki insurgency is mainly focused on establishing a sovereign independent state for Kukis encompassing areas of Manipur and Myanmar.

  • The main group responsible for the insurgency is the Kuki National Organisation (KNO) and its military wing, the Kuki National Army (KNA).

 

Start of militancy

  • Manipur became a fully fledged state in 1972 after being separated from parts of Burma. The integration was opposed due to separation of ancestral land between two countries.

  • The insurgency of Kukis started after clashes between Nagas and the Kukis. Since 2005, operations have been temporarily suspended.

 

Reasons for insurgency

  • Their main demand was for formation of Kukiland consisting of Kuki-populated areas in Myanmar, Manipur, Assam, and Mizoram.

  • They are also demanding a Kukiland Territorial Council, modeled on Bodoland Territorial Council for self-governance in their areas.

  • The ethnic clash with Naga tribes was the main reason for them picking up arms.

 

Kuki tribes

  • Kukis are a group of ethnic tribes residing in India’s north-eastern regions of Manipur, Mizoram, and Assam, as well as parts of Bangladesh and Myanmar. 

  • They make up one of the three major ethnic groups in Manipur. The Meitei living in Imphal valley and Nagas living in Manipur hills make up the other two.

 

Way ahead

  • Restoring peace in the region by creating harmony between ethnic groups is of utmost priority for all stakeholders.

  • The government has tried to workout negotiations with different tribal groups and many have already signaled intention to conduct talks.

  • The biggest challenge would be to break the nexus between politicians, militants, and criminals. It is the main reason for failure of talks till now.

  • The government is unclear on use of AFSPA to tackle insurgency or relying on negotiations to give long-term stability and peace.