KANGPOKPI| Jun 24: Various Kuki Students’ bodies held a public rally in a show of support and solidarity with United Peoples’ Front (UPF) and Kuki National Organisation (KNO) at Kangpokpi district headquarters today in regard to “Kuki Political Talks” to be held at New Delhi tomorrow.
The 7th round of ‘Political Dialogue’ will be held between the govt. of India (GoI), govt. of Manipur and UPF and KNO.
The public rally was jointly organised by several student bodies of Sadar Hills including TSA- Sadar Hills, Zillai Sadar Hills and Gangte Students’ Organisation-Sadar Hills etc. under the aegis of Kuki Students’ Organisation Sadar Hills. It commenced from downtown IT Road and culminated at the Main Bazar of Kangpokpi district headquarters.
Around 100 students along with leaders and representatives of various CVOs including women bodies also took part in the rally organised in support of UPF and KNO. And, the participants at the rally were witnessed holding banners and placards that read ‘UPF-KNO Kuki political emissaries’, ‘Public rally to expedite Kuki political solution’, ‘Expedite our demands, Justice delayed is Justice denied’, ‘Expedite Kuki Political Solution’, ‘Students for Peace, No political solution No Rest’ and ‘No Kukiland No Rest’ amongst others.
Speaking to the media at the sidelines of the rally, general secretary, KSO Sadar Hills, Goulen Haokip stated the students’ community are gathered here today to show their support and solidarity with the Kuki political emissaries, the UPF and the KNO, in the 7th round of Kuki Political Talks to be held at New Delhi tomorrow where discussions will be held on “the long cherished demand of the Kukis.”
While stating that the rally was a means for the students’ community to convey their whole hearted support for the UPF and KNO, who represents the 23 cognate tribes of the Kukis, in the Talks, he also said, “It is also a message to the GoI to acknowledge the aspiration of the Kuki people and expedite the process of the historic Kuki political talks so as to accomplish our long cherished demand and solved the vexed political issue of the Kukis.”
“We strongly support the ongoing political dialogue between the GoI, GoM and the UPF and KNO for early settlement of the vexed political issues of the Kukis and urge both the State and Central governments to expedite the talks to find an amicable solution at the earliest,” Goulen Haokip added.
Meanwhile, sources from UPF confirmed that seven delegates will represent the Front in the 7th round of political dialogue which included chairman of UPF, ST. Thangboi; spokesperson UPF, Aaron Kipgen; president of ZRA/ZRO, Calvin H; Jacob Haokip of UKLF; Henkholal Doungel of KRF; David Chongloi of KRA(U), and Sanga Hmar and HPC(D). While sources from KNO stated that similar number of delegates will represent the KNO, which include its president PS. Haokip; vice president, David Hangshing; negotiator, Seilen Haokip; secretary (Home) Tongpu Haokip and secretary (Defence) TS Haokip along with JMGs, L. Jacob Khongsai and Lutginlal Manlun.
Interestingly, both the leaders of UPF, ST Thangboi Kipgen and KNO, PS Haokip will be participating in the 7th round of political dialogue, while an unconfirmed source said that it is the directive of the Government that all the top brass leaders of both umbrella organisations should participate in the talks with reasons not ascertained till the time of writing this report.
It may be mentioned here that a draft outline of the political demand for formation of ‘Territorial Council’ signed by UPF spokesperson, Aaron Kipgen and KNO negotiator, Seilen Haokip was tabled during the 6th round of talks last year on January 10 when the newly appointed interlocutor, AB Mathur had chaired the talks for the first time after he replaced Dineshwar Sharma as the Interlocutor.