Sharing the letter on social media, Shah wrote, “The government is ready to discuss the issue of Manipur and seeks cooperation from all the parties, rising above party lines. I hope that all the parties will cooperate in resolving this important issue.”
In separate letters to Congress leaders Mallikarjun Kharge and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, the home minister said Manipur is a very important border state and its “rich cultural heritage is the ‘Jewel’ of the culture not only of Manipur but of entire India.”
“In the last six years of Bharatiya Janata Party rule in Manipur, the region was experiencing a new era of peace and development. But due to some court decisions and some incidents, incidents of violence took place in Manipur in the beginning of May,” the minister wrote, referring to an order by the Manipur high court that recommended to the government that the dominant Meiteis be included in the scheduled tribe list.
“Some shameful incidents also came to the fore, after which the people of the entire country, the people of the North East and especially the people of Manipur are expecting the Parliament of the country to rise above party politics and stand with the people of Manipur in this difficult time,” he added.
He said that the government is ready to give a statement on Manipur in both Houses followed by a discussion but “cooperation of all the parties is expected in this.”
“I urge you and all members of your party to lend your support in ensuring the continued functioning of Parliament,” he added.
The opposition, however, has been demanding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi should first make a statement on the Manipur issue in Parliament before a debate on the matter can be taken up.
While PM Modi broke more than two months of public silence over the ethnic clashes last week, telling reporters that mob assaults on two women who were paraded naked were unforgivable, he did not refer directly to the larger violence.
With the opposition and treasury bench members not relenting, a logjam is prevailing in both houses.
So far, more than 150 people have died and several hundred injured, besides thousands taking shelter in relief camps. But a video of two women from the Kuki-Zomi community paraded naked and sexually assaulted by a mob of Meities triggered nationwide outrage, with opposition intensifying its demand for Manipur CM N Biren Singh’s sacking.