TODAY -

ATSUM, KSO & ANSAM urge Najma not to okay MAPLM (P&F) BUI, 2018
Source: The Sangai Express / Newmai News Network

Imphal, July 03 2018: Three prominent tribal student bodies have apprised the Governor not to give her assent to the "The Manipur Agriculture Produce and Livestock Marketing (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill No 4 of 2018" .

The All Tribal Students' Union Manipur (ATSUM), the Kuki Students' Organization, General Headquarters (KSO-GHQ) and the All Naga Students' Association, Manipur (ANSAM), in a joint memorandum submitted to the Governor, have termed the Bill as "controversial" following certain grounds.

According to the three student bodies, the Bill is controversial because "by virtue of the special provision under Article 371C of the constitution of India and the subsequent order issued by W Giri, the then President of India, use of Land and Forest, Transferred Land and Forest and setting apart of Land and Forest is within the purview of Hill Area Committee (HAC)" .

They also said that, this should not be taken away by the controversial Bill "because under section 15 (3) of the said bill authorise the Deputy Commissioner of the concerned Districts so as to deliver Land and Forest of- Hill Areas to the market community" .

According to the ATSUM, KSO-GHQ and ANSAM, Section 29(14) of The Manipur (Hill Areas of District Council) Act, 1971 empower allotment, occupation or use, setting a part of land in favour of Autonomous District Council of the Hill Areas, "as such this power delegated by the Parliament cannot be taken away by the impugned controversial bill" .

The three student bodies also said that, in the scheduled of the said Controversial Bill under section 2 (2) and section 2 (13) more man 40 items produced by the Hill Areas are subject to and at the pleasure of licence holder which means the producers has nothing to do with the products thereof except under section 10 (1)."By way of retrospective effect under section 8, the Government has every right to designate special community market which was already market under the social custom of each tribes established in the hill areas," they stated, adding, "The word "Consultation" which appeared in the second last line of the proviso of section 3 (1) is meaningless unless local authority or ADC has authority to modify/reject/accept.

Thereby, destroy the authority and sanctity of the Local Authority or Autonomous District Council" .

According to the ATSUM, KSO-GHQ and the ANSAM, by virtue of section 20, the important and sanctity of the agriculturists of the Hill Areas is reprieved of as no one is competent to be qualified to vote at the election of the representative of agriculturist defined under section 20 (1).They also added that by virtue of item 1 of the second schedule of the schedule matters of the Manipur Legislative Assembly (Hill Areas), Order 1972, Development and Economic Planning within the Plan Allocation for the Hill Areas and by virtue of para-IV (5) (a), it is the sovereign duty of the Hill Area Committee (HAC) to safeguard the interest of the people of Hill Areas.

This mandatory provision guaranteed under Constitution of India cannot be taken away by the controversial Bill without due process of law.

"The controversial Bill is arbitrary, bias, unconstitutional, ultra-vires and hit by well established principle of natural justice which cannot be acted upon," they added.

According to the three student bodies, the Bill is controversial because, section 136 of Chapter - XIII provides framing of law and rules for more than 40 items to The Manipur Agricultural Produce And Livestock Marketing (Promotion and Facilitation), Bill 2018 .

"As such, the hill people cannot close our eyes in respect of framing the rules which is not known to the stakeholders such framing rules cannot be arbitrarily given to the State Government by this Controversial Bill," they asserted.

They also pointed out that there are so many loopholes, irregularities and one sided sections which is against the rule of law and is liable to be reconsider before converting into an enforceable act.

"Hence, consideration is necessary," the student bodies suggested.

According to the three student bodies, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda for sustainable Development-adopted by world leaders in September 2015 at an historic UN Summit-that officially came into force on January 1, 2016, and universally applied to all countries to mobilize efforts to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities, and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind, are also defeated.

The ATSUM, the KSO-GHQ and the ANSAM stated that the lands of the tribals of the State of Manipur are protected by the standing Order No.9 of 10-12-34, which reads, "Transfer of land from one village to another by sale or any other way is not allowed except with the permission of the President, Manipur State and terms and conditions of any such may be clearly laid down and agreed before such permission will be given" .

As such, the student bodies said, the standing order stands remain till date for which your timely intervention is indispensable to uphold the law of the land.

The three student organizations also pointed out that, the rights of the indigenous people are protected under Article 10 and Article 26 of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples adopted by General Assembly Resolution 61/295 on September 13, 200, and to which the Government of India is a signatory.

"It is therefore prayed that the bill shall not be extended in the Hill Areas of Manipur so as to protect the life and properties of the hill peoples and to fulfil the spirit and desire of the Constitution of India," they added.


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