The attempts to restore peace in the conflict-ridden state of Manipur faced another setback on Friday when intense gunfire erupted in Molnoi near Pallel in the Tengnoupal district.
A claim has gone viral about the Heavy gunfight between the Manipur state security forces & the armed Kuki militants at Molnoi Village in Pallel of Tengnoupal district. Imphal Times claimed on X,”Heavy gunfight between suspected Kuki militants, clash between AR and Meira Paibis in Pallel area reported.
Heavy gunfight was reported today between the state security forces & the armed Kuki militants at Molnoi Village in Pallel of Tengnoupal district.”
In their report on on 8 Sept on their official website they mentioned,” A police team rushed to the site and in an effort to protect those settling in the area retaliated and firing between the armed group, suspected to be Kuki militants.”
Further their report stated,” Kuki militants attacking the innocent villagers, thousands of men and women thronged to Pallel area from Kakching and Thoubal sides. Those unarmed people with the spirit to protect Manipur from armed militants were stopped by Assam Rifles personnel deployed at Pallel.”
DFRAC investigated the viral claim. During the processwe found the tweet from the official account of Manipur Police. They released their official statement. They clarified,” There are posts on social media regarding exchange of fire between Kuki militants and Meetei village volunteers,which is not correct .
It is clarified that the incident was related to firing between security forces and armed miscreants at Pallel.”
We also found the report of News Portal Deccan Chronicle which aligned with the statement of Manipur police.
In their report published on 8 sept, they mentioned,” Admitting that identity of armed groups was not known, security sources claimed that armed rebel groups based in Imphal Valley are suspected to have been involved in firing.”
There was no mention of Kuki Militants as rioters in the report.
From DFRAC‘s fact check it is evident that the Imphal Times’ claim regarding exchange of fire between Kuki militants and Meitei village volunteers are misleading. Manipur Police official statement called out the claim as incorrect.