Imphal, July 9:
In what can only be described as a poorly executed plan to provide security arrangements to farmers, the Manipur Police have issued a directive, urging farmers not to venture out to their agricultural fields without notifying the respective Superintendent of Police (SP) in their districts. The announcement was made by Inspector General of Police I K Muivah during a press conference at the Manipur Police Headquarters.
Muivah said: “At this point, farmers should not venture out to the field all by themselves without informing police. Because that will be very hazardous and risky. And we would appeal to the public that they should meet with SP and inform them about their requirements and the SP will accordingly make security arrangements and that the farming activities be done in coordination like that with the security forces.”
During the press conference, media personnel inquired about the provision of a dedicated phone number for farmers to contact the SP more easily. However, to the disappointment of many, Muivah could not provide such a number, making it appear that the government has not prepared well enough to address the situation.
Muivah further highlighted, “To facilitate the agricultural activities during this season, the police department is providing security, especially for facilitating agricultural activities under the guidance of the Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh.”
Regarding the deployment of security personnel, Muivah underlined, “The personnel will be deployed under the DC and SP, in consultation with the agriculture department and also the local population – the farmers as to where the security requirements are there. And these are the places where the planting activities are to take place.” He emphasized, “No farmers should go out for farming if they don’t have any security cover.”
Considering the tense situation and the incidents of violence reported across various parts of the state, Muivah informed, “During the last 24 hours, state police and central forces conducted massive search operations in the vulnerable and fringe areas in Churachandpur district, Bishnupur, and Kangpokpi district.” The IG informed that there was no report of recovery of arms and ammunition in the last 24 hours.
Considering the tense situation and the incidents of violence reported across various parts of the state, the Manipur Police’s recent operations have aimed to maintain law and order. However, the lack of a dedicated phone number and the absence of concrete preparations raise doubts about the government’s ability to effectively address the security concerns of farmers.