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Aizawl women corporators seek equal treatment for Kuki-Zo rape victims in Manipur

 A Solidarity March in support of Kuki-Zo tribals at Aizawl on July 25

Aizawl: Cutting across party lines, seven women corporators from the Aizawl Municipal Corporation (AMC) came together on Wednesday to advocate for the fair treatment of Kuki-Zo women who have been victims of rape and sexual harassment in Manipur. 

They demanded that the Manipur state government should uphold its promise of providing justice, just as they would to a Naga woman who was similarly victimised by miscreants in the strife-torn state.

Woman corporator Zikpuii Pachuau said that the women corporators wrote a missive to the chairperson of the National Commission for Women Rekha Sharma that the Manipur government promised to pay Rs 10 lakh compensation and to induct the woman’s young daughter a government job on compassionate ground when she attains the age for entering government service.

Pachuau said that there should not be discrimination between tribals residing in the same state and who are victims of the same heinous crime and that a number of Kuki-Zo women who are victims of rape and sexual harassment should be given the same treatment.

The Manipur government is yet to announce any proposal for compensation of Kuki-Zo women who are rape victims, some of them even gang-raped, paraded naked and even murdered publicly.

“We also demanded that chairperson of the National Commission for Women should go to Manipur and see for herself the sufferings of the people as well as interact with the rape victims,” she said.

The women corporators also urged the NCW chairperson to take steps to ensure that the perpetrators of the horrible crime are brought to book and punished in accordance to the law of the land. 

They asked her to take concrete steps for the safety of the women of the northeast region.

The corporators submitted the letter through Lawmchhungi, chairperson of the Mizoram state Commission for Women who will pursue the matter with the NCW in Delhi.

Meanwhile, with the entry of 22 more internally displaced people (IDPs) of Manipur into Mizoram, the number of Manipur IDPs taking shelter in the state rose to 12,618 as of 5 pm on Wednesday, state home department officials said.

While 9,839 IDPs are staying with their relatives or friends or in rented houses, 2,779 people are lodged in 38 relief camps, the officials added. 

Primary Teachers’ condemnation: Meanwhile, the Mizoram Primary Teachers Association (MPTA) State Womens’ Network deplored the violence against the Kuki-Zo people in the ongoing ethnic conflict between the Meiteis and the Kuki-Zo people in Manipur. 

“As mothers, sister, and as fellow women, we vehemently condemn the atrocious and heinous acts met by our Kuki-Zo sisters whose dignities have been utterly crushed by being paraded naked, molested, abused ang gang-raped. Such acts against women are without a doubt most brutal and inhumane. We feel the pain, humiliation and indignation of our fellow sisters,” the Network said in a statement today.

The MPTA State Womens’ Network beseeched the National Human Rights Commission to look into the matter and to take proper and swift action against the culprits to ensure that justice is brought to the forefront. It is our heartfelt wish and prayer that such callous acts against women will be prevented in the future.

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