Tatsat Chronicle Magazine

Relief Camps Turn Into Serious Health Concern Five Months Into Manipur Ethnic Violence

The lack of basic sanitation and health amenities in the hundreds of relief camps that have sprung up in the hill districts to accommodate the internally displaced people is posing a serious health problem. It has been reported that more than 40 people, including minors, have died in various camps due to lack of medical facilities
October 12, 2023
Manipur Relief Camp
No space: People are living in cramped condition in the relief camps. Photo: Kuki Khanglai Lompi

More than five months into the Manipur ethnic violence, which shows no signs of abating, thousands of displaced people are still languishing in relief camps. In Churachandpur, the tribal hill district which has been the hotbed of the ongoing turmoil, the maximum number of internally displaced people (IDP) are living in dilapidated relief camps that lack basic amenities. Most of the relief camps are reported to be in a similar condition.

For this reason, these relief camps in Manipur have become a major healthcare concern with real chances of an epidemic outbreak. Since May 3, when the first incidents of violence took place, relief camps have come up in Kangpokpi, Tengnoupal and Chandel districts.

According to media reports in the last week of September, a total of 37 people, including minors, have died in relief camps in Churachandpur. MK Henry, a journalist based in Lamka, told me that by now the toll has gone up to 40 (and counting). He says that the underlying cause is various ailments among the old and young and the unavailability of medical care facilities besides the absence of basic amenities in these relief camps.

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Ninglun Hanghal

She is an Imphal based freelance journalist and writes on the most burning issues in the north-east for some of India’s leading publications. With her extensive contacts in the region, she gets details and information, which are difficult to gather. She writes on current affair, politics, gender issues and human rights.