Manipur to lift ban on internet services from today, says CM N Biren Singh
The Manipur government had suspended mobile data services in some districts of the state on May 3 following ethnic violence—a day later all internet services had been shut across the state and it has continued since
Manipur chief minister N Biren Singh on Saturday announced that the ban on the internet will be lifted in the violence-hit state from today.
“As a precautionary measure to prevent the spread of rumours and videos, photos, and messages, which might affect the law and order situation of the state, the state government imposed a ban on the internet. But from today onwards the internet ban will be lifted,” Singh said while addressing a press conference in Imphal on Saturday.
On the report of the availability of ‘internet data services in mobile phones’ in some areas of Churachandpur and adjoining Bishnupur district on September 20, he said that the suspension of mobile data services is still in force. Singh also informed that two officials have already been put under suspension in this regard.
The Manipur government had suspended mobile data services in some districts of the state on May 3 following ethnic violence—a day later all internet services had been shut across the state and it has continued since.
It may be mentioned that the Manipur government on June 27 partially lifted the internet ban in the strife-torn state by conditionally allowing broadband service while keeping the ban on mobile internet following a government order on July 25.
The ethnic conflict that has engulfed Manipur since May 3 has claimed 175 people till date, 1,108 others injured,32 missing and nearly 50,000 people were displaced besides burning several villages and localities.
There have been 5,172 arson cases, including 4,786 houses and 386 religious places during the four-month-long crisis. A total of 5,668 arms have been lost from across the state. So far security forces have successfully recovered 1,329 arms.
Meanwhile, the Manipur government has re-imposed curfew in Imphal East and Imphal West districts as a precautionary measure until further orders. On Friday night, the district authorities announced to relaxation of the curfew from 5am to 9pm starting Saturday.
However, the orders were later cancelled in the wake of fresh clashes between police and protesters over the report of the re-arrest of one village defence volunteer while four other village defence volunteers were released on bail by a special court on Friday.
On Friday, the Manipur government also asked the people to surrender “illegal weapons” within 15 days or face “comprehensive search operations by security forces”.
An official statement was also issued by the chief minister’s office in this regard, which stated that the government “is willing to take a considerate view of the persons submitting such illegal weapons within 15 days”.
“At the end of the 15 days, security forces, both the central and state will undertake a strong and comprehensive search operation all over the state to recover such weapons, and all persons associated with any illegal weapons will be dealt with severely, as per law,” the release said.