Bnei Menashe in danger: A personal story

Bnei Menashe in danger: A personal story

A personal account by Yosef Vaiphei from Beth El Langol, in Manipur, India. Yosef’s younger brother Samuel Vaiphei, who was married just a month ago, works for Shavei Israel and was in Churachandpur occupied with the work regarding the aliyah process for the next Bnei Menashe group to move to Israel; his family was in Imphal where the worst violence was taking place. They were separated because of the violence.

Samuel remains in Churachandpur and is busy with distribution of food to the Bnei Menashe refugees and is running medical center.

Yosef writes, “It has been a tough month for me and my family as we try to come to terms with what’s happened. We’ve felt shocked, helpless, hurt, sad, tired, numb and angry at the same time.

Yosef with his father, mother and sister-in-law in Guwahati

“It was on the eve of 3rd May, 2023 around at 6:00 pm, a group of  the Meitei organization [ethnic group in northeast India] numbering more than a thousand, with the help of Manipur State Police, attacked my residence at Newlambulane 3rd Street, Imphal East.

“Defenseless, we had to hide under our beds for cover. Stones rained at our residence as we were helpless but luckily the miscreants were unlucky to try and break down our main gate and enter my place. The attack lasted for around 10 minutes, after which they retreated. We packed our bags and important documents and had to take shelter in our neighbors garage where we spent the night.

“After a short while, the miscreants came back again and started attacking where they successfully took down our residence gate and ransacked our house and destroyed our vehicles.

“The next morning, with the help of the Indian Army, we were escorted to Leimakhong Red Shield Army Camp where we took refuge for the next 5 days. From there, we moved to Guwahati and have been staying in a hotel. With the current situation in Imphal right now, it looks like I wont be going back home any sooner.

“No words can bring back what we’ve lost but I’m sharing my journey.”

We are all with you, Yosef; thinking of you and your family and all the Bnei Menashe and others who were affected. To donate to the Bnei Menashe Emergency Relief Fund, click here.

Samuel Vaiphei is pictured here in the center, standing behind the white sacks.