The Manipur government on Wednesday extended Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) in hill areas of state for 6 months beginning October 1. According to the official notification, 19 police stations in valley have been excluded. In an official notification issued on Wednesday, it was stated that "Governor of Manipur hereby accords approval to declare the entire state of Manipur excluding the areas falling under the jurisdiction of 19 police stations as 'Disturbed Area' for a period of six months with effect from October 1, 2023. The police station areas where the Disturbed Areas Act has not been imposed are Imphal, Lamphel, City, Singjamei, Sekmai, Lamsang, Pastol, Wangoi, Porompat, Heingagng, Lamlai, Iribung, Leimakhong, Thoubal, Bishnupur, Nambol, Moirang, Kakchin and Jirbam.
After a brief period of peace, the northeastern state again witnessed violent protests by students after photos of the bodies of the two missing youths went viral on social media, which again resulted in the enforcement of the mobile ban. At least, 45 students, many of them girls, were injured in Imphal Valley on Tuesday as the police fired tear gas shells and baton-charged protesters.
The mobile internet data services, and internet/data services through VPN were suspended in the territorial jurisdiction of Manipur for five days with immediate effect till 7.45 pm of October 1, 2023, read an official notice released on Tuesday.
Manipur has been on edge since ethnic clashes broke out in the state on May 3, when a 'Tribal Solidarity March' was organised in the hill districts to protest against the majority Meitei community's demand for Scheduled Tribe status.