An Imphal-based organisation has barred popular Manipuri film star Soma Laishram from acting in films and attending social functions for three years for defying an appeal to celebrities not to participate in entertainment events as long as Manipur burns.
The group, Kangleipak Kanba Lup (KKL) said she took part in a beauty pageant in New Delhi on September 16, which was against the general call to actors to avoid such events in view of the ongoing ethnic conflict in Manipur that has claimed the lives of more than 170 people since May 3.
Film Forum Manipur (FFM), the umbrella organisation of all film bodies in the State, criticised the KKL’s decree on Ms. Laishram and said it would try to get the ban revoked.
Ms. Laishram, who has acted in more than 150 Manipuri films and bagged numerous awards, said she participated in the North East Students’ Festival at New Delhi’s Talkatora Stadium because it celebrated the cultural heritage of the northeast.
“As a professional actor and a social influencer, it is my responsibility to communicate and speak up about the crisis in Manipur and I chose this platform,” she told Waari Singbul, a Manipur-based agency.
The KKL said it had approached the FFM and Film Actors’ Guild Manipur in order to request Ms. Laishram not to participate in the New Delhi event. “But she defied all requests in total disrespect to the Meitei people who have died (in the ethnic conflict) so far,” the organisation said in a statement.