Manipur Sportsperson Ready to Return Awards if Peace Not Restored Soon

National Desk, 31 May: At least 13 Manipur athletes have pledged to surrender their medals and honours if the violent state’s tranquilly cannot be quickly restored, according to allegations that surfaced on Wednesday.

An eight-point note was reportedly delivered to Union Home Minister Amit Shah in Imphal on Tuesday requesting strong action against the extremist groups responsible for the carnage.

Olympic medalist Mirabai Chanu, weightlifter Kunjarani Devi, former Indian women’s football team captain Oinam Bem Bem Devi, boxer L. Sarita Devi, Olympian judoka Likmabam Shushila Devi, and boxer L. Ibomcha Singh are among the athletes who pledged to return medals and prizes.

The athletes stated in the memorandum that if the authorities fail to bring peace to the state they will not only return their medals but also refrain from competing for India in any international events.

Addressing the media at Manipur Press Club in Majorkhul, L Anita Chanu said, “When we stood at international podiums, we represented a unified Manipur and India but the way in which the situation unfolded threatens that idea of a unified Manipur, we have confidence in the centre but their delay in intervention has come at the cost of numerous lives.”

The memorandum includes, To revoke the Suspension of Operation (SoO) agreement with the Kuki militant groups, Restore peace and normalcy at the earliest, To protect unity and integrity of the State Manipur, Discarding the demand to disintegrate Manipur under any circumstances, Allowing Meeteis to settle in the hills and To deport illegal immigrants to their respective countries among others.

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