Thirteen militants laid down arms to Manipur Chief Minister N Biren on Thursday at the 1st Manipur Rifles complex. Twelve of them were cadres of banned KCP(PWG) and while one was a cadre of banned outfit KYKL.
N. Biren Singh welcomed them all and stated that the time is ripe to work for growth and development and stated that the insurgency problem would be resolved within five years. Manipur has been insurgency-related problems since the 1960s and it has declined in the last 5 years.
He said the Central Government agencies working in the State should observe the changing scenario and the insurgency problem should be resolved in a positive way.
Dealing with insurgent groups to bring them in the mainstream needs special focus he added. He also spoke on the importance of joint efforts among the State and Central armed forces to deal with the issue through the exchange of plans and strategies.
The government had already started works to convince various insurgent groups, through political dialogues and schemes for Surrender-cum Rehabilitation, and bring them back home he said.
N. Biren Singh said some vested interest groups were trying to create a bad image of the State by playing ethnic-based politics. He appealed to the public to work together for the development of the country.
He reiterated the assurance made by Union Home Minister Amit Shah that not a single bullet would be fired on those militants who want to return to normal lives and join the National mainstream and no FIR would be lodged against them unless they are involved in a heinous crime.
He further appealed to all the other insurgent groups to come back to the mainstream, taking advantage of such a right time.
The arms and ammunition laid down before the Chief Minister included two lathode guns, three 9mm pistols, three IEDs, two detonators, two radio sets, five letterheads and four extortion slips.