Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh on Sunday said his government was holding “peace talks” with an Imphal Valley-based insurgent group.
Speaking to PTI, Singh said the talks were at an advanced stage, even though he stayed away from naming the underground organisation.
This was for the first time that there was an official confirmation about such talks being held by the government, since ethnic violence broke out on May 3.
Earlier, sources had said that the government was holding talks with one faction of the proscribed United National Liberation Front (UNLF).
More than 180 people have been killed since the violence broke out on May 3 after a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ was organised in the hill districts to protest against the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status.
The Meiteis account for about 53 per cent of Manipur’s population and live mostly in the Imphal Valley, while tribals, which include Nagas and Kukis, constitute 40 per cent and reside mainly in the hill districts.