Insurgents
Threaten Migrants

The Revolutionary People’s Front (RPF) issued a statement in early May demanding all migrants leave the state by May 31, 2010. The RPF is the political arm of the Manipur People’s Liberation Army (MPLA), a revolutionary movement formed to fight for the establishment of an independent Manipuri state. The RPF defines "non-Manipuris" as those who entered Manipur after it became part of India in 1949.

The RPF said there is no place for "non-Manipuris" in Manipur.

Migrant workers and immigrants from other states have been under extreme distress in recent months. In an effort to control traffic of the migrant population, the RPF has issued a warning to all transport vehicles traveling into Manipur: they must not carry migrant workers into the state. They have told all Manipuris not to rent or sell property to "non-Manipuris." Over 30 migrants have been killed this year by militant groups.

Migrant workers, and Indians who settled in the region from other states, comprise a substantial sector of the state economy. A large number of people from other Indian states work in Manipur. Many contribute to private companies and key educational institutions.

Update: A week prior to the May 31st deadline migrant workers were seen leaving the state in fear of RPF action. At the time this article was published, the RPF has taken no action against migrants remaining in the state to the extent of our knowledge.

Manipur’s Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh recently stated that the Manipur government will provide physical protection for migrant workers. However, we have not received any reports of forces on the ground protecting "non-Manipuris." Indeed, we have received reports that no such forces can be found.

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