Chidambaram slams BJP for comparing Manipur with Rajasthan, West Bengal
The BJP has been raising the incidents of atrocities against women in West Bengal, Rajasthan and Bihar and questioning the "silence" of the opposition
Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Sunday hit out at the BJP for comparing the situation in Manipur to that of Bihar, West Bengal and Rajasthan, alleging that the government in the northeastern state has "collapsed" while the Centre is in a "self-induced coma".
The BJP has been raising the incidents of atrocities against women in West Bengal, Rajasthan and Bihar and questioning the "silence" of the opposition, which has termed it as a diversionary tactic to avoid debate on the situation in violence-hit Manipur.
More than 160 people have lost their lives, and several have been injured since ethnic violence broke out in Manipur on May 3 when a 'Tribal Solidarity March' was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
In a long Twitter post, Chidambaram said, "Let's admit that there were incidents of violence against women in Bihar, West Bengal and Rajasthan. How does that excuse the continuing and relentless violence in Manipur?" "Are there any Kukis left in the valley? Are there any Meiteis left in Churachandpur and other hill districts of Manipur?" the former home minister said.
If reports are true, ethnic cleansing is almost complete in Manipur, he said.
On an objective assessment, there is a collapse of constitutional government in Manipur, Chidambaram asserted.
The writ of the chief minister and his ministers does not run beyond their homes and offices, he claimed.
"How can the situation in Manipur be compared to the situation in Bihar, West Bengal and Rajasthan? The central government has not only been incompetent and partisan, it is callous and cruel when it hides behind the smokescreen of odious comparisons," he said.
Chidambaram said if stern action is required in Bihar, West Bengal and Rajasthan, certainly instruct the state governments to take stronger action, but that does not excuse the barbarism that is taking place in Manipur.
"The government of Manipur has collapsed. The government of India is in a self-induced coma," he said.
Tension further mounted in Manipur on Wednesday after a May 4 video surfaced online showing two women from one of the warring communities being paraded naked by a group of men from the other side.
Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur's population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley, while tribals, which include Nagas and Kukis, constitute 40 per cent and reside mostly in the hill districts.