Himachal CM pays for local students’ evacuation from Manipur from own pocket

New Delhi: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Sukhvinder Singh Sukhu shelled out Rs 60,000 from his own pocket for the evacuation of five local students stuck in violence-hit Manipur, an official spokesperson of the government said on Monday.

The Chief Minister immediately responded to an urgent text message by a stuck student and came up with Rs 60,000 for the students’ evacuation back home, said the spokesperson.

He also instructed the state government officers to take necessary action to bring back the five students — Simran, Sujal Kaundal and Ashwani Kumar from Mandi, Nawang Chhering from Kullu, and Keshav Singh from Hamirpur.

Three of them were pursuing studies at NIT Manipur, while the other two were studying at Khumban Lampak Sports Complex, National Sports University — both in Imphal.

Manipur was struck with a sectarian violence on May 3 when people from Meitei and Kuki tribe clashed with each other over Meiteis’ demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status, leading to the death of at least 54 people.

The clashes broke out after the tribals organised a demonstration in the ten hill districts of the state to protest against the Meiteis’ demand.

So far, 23,000 people have been rescued from the violence-hit areas and moved to military garrisons, officials said.

The Himachal Pradesh government spokesperson said the students had been flown from Imphal to Kolkata and they will reach New Delhi by the evening.

The state government has issued telephone numbers for the evacuation of other Himachalis from Manipur and interested persons can contact on 89883-41921, 0177-2929688, 0177-2629439, he added.