Don’t change names of places, warns Manipur government

The government stated that ‘appropriate action’ would be taken if attempts are made to use renaming of places to create conflict between communities

Updated - October 08, 2023 07:25 am IST

Published - October 08, 2023 02:48 am IST - GUWAHATI

Elderly people take part in a ‘silent rally’ for peace and harmony at Khongjom War Memorial Complex in Manipur’s Thoubal district.

Elderly people take part in a ‘silent rally’ for peace and harmony at Khongjom War Memorial Complex in Manipur’s Thoubal district. | Photo Credit: PTI

GUWAHATI

The Manipur government has asked organisations and individuals in the State not to change the names of “districts, sub-divisions, places, institutions, and addresses of such institutions” on their own to create possible conflict between communities.

The order issued by Chief Secretary Vineet Joshi on October 5 but released Friday night warned of “appropriate actions” according to the law if any organisation or individual is found involved in such renaming.

There have been instances of some organisations changing the names of districts, places, and institutions on ethnic lines after the conflict between the tribal Kukis and non-tribal Meiteis broke out on May 3.

Such actions create problems for the authorities, the Chief Secretary’s order said.

“…it has come to the notice of the State government that many civil society organisations, institutions, establishments, and persons are deliberately renaming or trying to rename districts, sub-divisions, places, institutions, and address of such institutions,” the order said.

“…these steps and actions are objectionable, or likely to create controversy and conflict between communities residing in the State, more particularly in the context of the ongoing law and order crisis [in the] aftermath [of] the Tribal Solidarity March organised by All Tribal Students Union Manipur on May 3,” it said.

The State government, the order said, views the matter very seriously and with utmost sensitivity as it could create, divide, or aggravate the current law and order situation in Manipur.

“Anyone found violating this order shall be prosecuted under relevant law of the land for the time being in force. All Central and State government authorities, management, institutions, establishment, autonomous bodies are also advised to check the name or address of respective offices/ establishments under them in all signage, official communications, websites, all documents related to services provided, etc., and also to ensure compliance of the orders,” the order said.

The district magistrates and superintendents of police of all the districts have accordingly been asked to take necessary action to enforce the order.

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