Manipur Violence - Brutal Crimes Against Women and Humanity: An Agenda for Action
Organised by Friends of Manipur, the Bombay Catholic Sabha, and presided over by Bishop Allwyn D’silva, a meeting condemning the violence and atrocities taking place in Manipur was held at St Joseph’s Convent School Hall, Bandra, on 28th July.
In his opening address, Bishop Allywn D'silva reminded his listeners to have the courage to go ahead, adding, “We hurt with the people of Manipur… we are here to rally, to condemn, to help.” The meeting hosted eminent speakers: senior Advocate Mihir Desai, journalist and activist Teesta Setalvad, author Rupa Chinai, and activist Irfan Engineer. They highlighted the factors weighing into the outbreak of violence: the divisive politics, the fight for resource-rich areas, the history of neglect and injustice, the involvement of extremist ideology, and condemned the inaction of the local law enforcement and the government, and the total disregard for citizen’s rights.
Each speaker emphasised the importance of standing in solidarity with the people of Manipur; they stressed the need for neutral security forces, for civilian teams to aid in rehabilitation, for citizens to spread awareness and condemn mismanagement vocally. The message that injustice against one community would eventually encourage widespread injustice against all minorities was echoed, with each speaker urging for citizens to rise up and band together in support.
The meeting concluded with a rousing call to action from Bombay Catholic Sabha President Dolphy D’souza, and an invitation for suggestion for aid from the audience.