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Project May 13, 2024

A Year After Ethnic Violence in Manipur


Niang Hangzo, who lives in California's San Francisco Bay Area, identifies as part of the Paithe tribe, a member of the Kuki, or Kuki-Zo, from India’s northeastern state of Manipur. She had never been political until she began receiving a flurry of messages from her family—her mother, sisters, and cousins—all fleeing mob violence in May 2023.

Hangzo started the North American Manipur Tribal Association (NAMTA) along with other diaspora now living in the United States.

This project uses Hangzo’s family to try to understand what life is like one year since the conflict began in Manipur.

Despite being physically removed from the turmoil, they still grapple with the impacts of the violence they escaped. This project delves into their experiences of displacement, trauma, and the challenges they face in rebuilding their lives in a new country.

Journalist Lakshmi Sarah and visual journalist Beth LaBerge explore why this occurred, how the family is rebuilding, and how they are still working to gain attention for their small community.