New Delhi (Agency): The Supreme Court on Wednesday told the Manipur government to submit a report regarding the recovery of all illegal arms in the state, which has been affected by ethnic violence since May.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud said, “The state needs to seize illegal arms. The state has to take action irrespective of who is holding the illegal arms.”
“Regarding recovery of arms, let a status report be furnished to this court by the government. The report shall be made available only to this court,” the bench ordered.
The top court also acknowledged an affidavit from the chief secretary of Manipur, which said that there was no shortage of essential items such as food and medicine for those affected by the economic blockade.
The chief secretary also denied allegations of chickenpox and measles outbreaks in relief camps.
Issuing a slew of fresh directions, the Supreme Court told the Union home secretary to communicate with Justice (retired) Gita Mittal, who heads a three-member panel appointed by the Supreme Court to oversee relief and rehabilitation efforts in Manipur.
The top court also asked the Manipur government to nominate an officer to interact with the committee and to submit a status report detailing steps taken to improve the state’s victim compensation scheme.
After the Supreme Court was told that a large number of bodies were lying in morgues and needed to be disposed of in a dignified manner, the beach said the government would have to take a call so the unclaimed bodies don’t spread diseases.
The top court told Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, “You have to do something about the bodies. They can’t be kept like that. It’s been four months now, else they will become a source of disease.”
Ethnic clashes broke out in Manipur in May over a High Court order directing the state government to consider including the non-tribal Meitei community in the list of Scheduled Tribes. (Courtesy: India Today)