“My Home’s In Manipur”: Olympian Mirabai Chanu Urges PM To Restore Peace

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Olympic medallist weightlifter Mirabai Chanu appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring an end to the ongoing conflict between two communities in her home state Manipur at the earliest.

Manipur has been witnessing ethnic clashes between the Meitei and Kuki communities since May 3. Over 150 people have been killed in the clashes so far.

Ms Chanu, currently training in the US, said athletes in the northeastern state have been affected by the conflict as they can’t train amid the ongoing violence.

“The conflict in Manipur is going to complete three months but peace is yet to return. Many players have not been able to train because of this conflict which has also hindered the studies of several children. Many lives have been lost and many houses have been burnt,” Ms Chanu said in a video on her Twitter handle.

“I want to appeal to the Prime Minister and Home Minister to bring an end to this conflict as soon as possible and save all the people of Manipur and bring back peace which was prevalent earlier.” 

Ms Chanu, who won a silver medal in 49 kg weight category in Tokyo Olympics, said she could not stop herself from thinking about the situation at home despite being far away.

“I have my house in Manipur though I am currently training in the USA to prepare for the upcoming World Championships and Asian Games. Even though I am not in Manipur, I always think about when this conflict will end,” she said.

Ethnic clashes erupted in the state on May 3 when a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status turned violent.

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

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