The Suspension of Operations (SoO) deal with Kuki rebel groups in the hill areas will be carried out, Union Home Minister Amit Shah pledged, according to Manipur Chief Minister N. Biren Singh on Monday.
The agreement mandates that the insurgent factions remain in their assigned camps and keep their weapons hidden. According to the Chief Minister, the Kuki insurgent groups broke the SoO pact’s ground conditions and promoted bloodshed.
What is the historical background of the Kuki Insurgency?
Background: The Kuki Insurgency is a struggle involving the Kuki ethnic group that is largely taking place in Manipur and Nagaland in northeastern India.
KNA, the Kuki National Army: The KNA was established in 1947 as part of the effort to abolish British colonial control. The KNA focused on the Indian government after India attained independence.
Demands: The Kuki groups have called for increased autonomy, the defence of their cultural identity, and the redress of socioeconomic wrongs.
Fragmented Movement: The Kuki insurgent movement is characterised by several factions and breakaway groups, including the United Kuki Liberation Front (UKLF), Kuki National Army, and others.
Violence and conflicts: Both Kuki and non-Kuki people have been displaced as a result of the conflict’s intermittent violence, clashes with security forces, and inter-tribal disputes.
Homeland and Autonomy: The Kuki organisations have demanded the establishment of an independent Kuki nation, where they can exercise self-government and safeguard their cultural legacy.
Socio-Economic Grievances: The Kuki people have expressed worries about socioeconomic inequalities, poor growth, and a lack of possibilities in their communities.
Negotiations and Peace Agreements: The rebel organisations, state governments, and the Indian central government have all engaged in negotiations to end the conflict. Suspension of Operations (SoO) agreements have been signed, offering transient cessations of hostilities and promoting communication.
What is Suspension of Operations (SoO)?
On August 22, 2008, a Suspension of Operations (SoO) agreement was reached to foster political discourse and put an end to the Kuki insurgency in Manipur.
Duration and Extension: The SoO agreement’s initial term is one year, but it may be extended based on how well implementation is going.
JMG, or the Joint Monitoring Group: The Joint Monitoring Group was established as a group to supervise the efficient execution of the SoO pact. All of the signatories are represented on this committee.
Ceasefire: According to the agreement, neither state- nor central-level security forces are allowed to conduct operations against underground organisations. The rebel organisations are also forbidden from starting any attacks or hostilities.
Constitutional Commitment: The United People’s Front (UPF) and the Kuki National Organisation (KNO), the parties to the SoO agreement, have promised to uphold the Indian Constitution, the laws of the land, and the territorial integrity of India.
Extortion and Atrocities are Prohibited: Any kind of extortion, atrocities, or other illegal actions are not permitted by underground groups.
The militant cadres must be restricted in certain camps that the government has identified.
Management of Arms: The groups are permitted to own weapons, but only to secure their camps and defend their leaders. The arms are placed in a secure space that has two locking mechanisms.
Rehabilitation Package: As part of the rehabilitation package, the underground cadres residing in designated camps are given a monthly stipend of Rs 5000. The chosen camps receive financial aid as well.
Way forward to solve the insurgency problem:
Dialogue and Negotiation: Engage in real discussions and negotiations with rebel organisations to learn about their issues and try to reach a compromise. This could entail starting peace negotiations, signing ceasefire pacts, and taking steps to increase trust.
Resolve the root causes: Determine the underlying reasons for the problems, such as socioeconomic inequalities, ethnic tensions, previous wrongdoings, and political marginalisation, and deal with them. To solve these fundamental problems, encourage inclusive government, equitable development, and social justice.
Development Initiatives: Implement focused development initiatives in the area to enhance the region’s infrastructure, healthcare, education, and employment prospects. These programmes could assist in addressing socioeconomic inequalities and decreasing the attractiveness of insurgency among disadvantaged groups.
Boost Security Procedures: increase the security forces’ ability and efficacy to uphold the law, protect the populace, and put an end to insurgency activity. However, it is crucial to make sure that security operations respect human rights principles and refrain from using disproportionate force.
Regional Cooperation: Fostering regional collaboration and coordination is important since some rebel organisations cross international boundaries, particularly in Myanmar, Bangladesh, and Bhutan. Insurgent activity can be reduced through exchanging intelligence, engaging in cooperative operations, and dealing with cross-border infiltration.