There is only one word to term the indiscriminate killings of migrant workers during the last 48 hours-terrorism. This word may not be strong enough to denounce the dastardly killings of the poor, helpless migrant workers and the helplessness of the victims has only added to the depravity of the action perpetrated by the unidentified gunmen. Though the agenda behind the serial killings of the migrant workers has not been spelt out, it is clear that there is a method behind the carnage and madness and this can be gauged from the fact that all the killings were conducted with clinical efficiency. This is what we find extremely disturbing and disgusting. Is this what is called the heroism or bravery of the Manipuri or Meitei people ? In other words, ‘Has the Meitei Nongsha’s valour now reduced to killing helpless Mutias ?’ Or is this the much vaunted and talked about rich culture and past glory of the Manipuri/Meitei people ? Anyone trying to sincerely find an answer to this will hang his or her head in shame. Today we have reached such a stage of decadence that we feel ashamed to be called Manipuris or Meiteis. Looking at the sequence of events in the last 48 hours, one can safely conclude that it could not have been the handiwork of some rag tag army of desperadoes but a well co-ordinated group of people, who are intent on carrying out their nefarious designs. It is unfortunate that the ULFA virus has also infected some demented minds here and the time has come for the people of Manipur to come out on the streets and say a big NO to such devilish designs. Any explanation or claims by any organisation in connection with the killings should not cut ice with the public, for justifying an act as inhuman as killing some migrant workers cannot be anything but trying to cover up their misdeeds. If they have the moral courage and conviction, they should state the reason truthfully without trying to force and mislead the public.
Lest the people are lulled into complacency, we would like to assert that no one should be given the right to justify such killings in the name of the interest of the land or anything lofty along this line. We are not being pessimistic but increasingly it has become clear that Manipur may be a lost cause, if the people do not wake up and take some very firm stand against all the mindless killings that we see all around on a daily basis. It is also amazing and extremely disappointing to see that no vocal protest against the killings have been raised till now and this where we would like to question all concerned, what the concept of human rights is all about. To our understanding human rights is not only about which country has signed what convention and all those gibberish terms and clauses but about respecting the rights and dignity of everyone. Randomly picking up migrant workers, lining them up and then shooting them to death in cold blood is violation of human rights in its extreme form and it is nothing less inhuman than the gassing of Jews during Germany’s Nazism or Stalin’s secret killings and mid-night knocks. It is a crime against humanity. It is a sell out of the culture of the land and the people and it is also the ultimate insult to our fore fathers, particularly the patriots who laid down their lives fighting the invading British soldiers. Our condolences to all the kins of the victims of the mindless bloodshed. Amen.
The Editorial of The Sangai Express, March 19, 2008
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