New Delhi: Former Army Chief General MM Naravane expressed concerns about the involvement of foreign agencies in the Manipur violence and highlighted the role of Chinese aid to various insurgent groups. Speaking at the India International Centre during a discussion on ‘National Security Perspective,’ General Naravane emphasised that instability in border states poses a threat to the country’s overall national security.
Addressing questions about the prolonged violence in Manipur, the retired Army Chief stated that the involvement of foreign agencies, particularly Chinese support for insurgent groups, cannot be ruled out. He pointed out that Chinese aid has been sustaining these groups for a considerable period and is likely to continue doing so.
Regarding the ongoing violence in Manipur and its connection to drug trafficking, General Naravane acknowledged that drug smuggling has been prevalent in the region for a long time. He attributed the increased drug seizures to the area’s proximity to the Golden Triangle, where the borders of Thailand, Myanmar, and Laos meet. The General noted that Myanmar’s unstable and military-controlled conditions have facilitated drug trafficking in the bordering states with India, China, and Thailand.
He also highlighted the possibility that some entities might benefit from the ongoing violence, leading to a reluctance to restore normalcy in the region. Despite the efforts of both the state and central governments to curb the violence, General Naravane suggested that certain individuals may exploit the instability for their own gains, which contributes to the continuation of violence in the area.