TODAY -

UCM: Proposed ADC Bill anti-Manipur
Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal, December 03 2021: United Committee Manipur (UCM) has stated that the "Manipur Hill Areas Autonomous District Council Bill" proposed by the Hill Areas Committee (HAC) is an anti-Manipur Bill, meant to divide the various communities of the state and should not be regarded as a state or development issue.

In a statement released by its IPR secretary Leisemba Lamaba, UCM questioned whether the elected members in the Legislative Assembly tabled the Bill, adding that repeated discussions of such a bill, with an agenda of favouring a single community gives the assumption of existence of a parallel government and lack of the mindset of a united state amongstthe members.

This is unfortunate considering the state has won numerous national awards in development and placed at the forefront of other states in various categories.

CThe statement continued: "The current elected leaders should remember the former leaders of the state, namely tribal leader Yangmaso Shaiza (July 1974 - December 1974), minority leader Mohammed Alimuddin (March 4, 1974 - July 9, 1974) and tribal leader Rishang Keishing (1980-1988 & 1994-1997), who stood for a united Manipur at all times.

"On the contrary, when looking at the current political scenarios of the state, the current leaders are weaving their own tales, apart from looking out for their own interests.

They are actively working to take up issues that could lead to the disintegration of the state, while indulging in fantasies of having their own leadership.

All of these are done in suppression of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of Manipur Legislative Assembly.

"As per Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business, the members could make suggestions or in general discuss an issue.

However, considering the prevailing political scenario in the state, the act of throwing ash into the eyes of the people and discussing issues favouring a single community in violation the Business, rules and regulations of the House, while the 60 MLAs continue to pretend to be bystanders, is dissatisfying.

The more shocking is that a committee is supposed to report to its parent body.

But when it comes to HAC and the Bill, the Business proceedings were sidelined and attempt was made to forcefully table the Bill in the House, while relaying to the people that the Bill was blocked from being tabled in the House.

"It is to be noted the HAC Bill demands for appointment of a separate Chief Secretary, which indicates that HAC no longer considers itself as a committee but a parallel government.

For it to be successful in its agenda, a Presidential Order needs to be issued for amendment of the ADC order of 1972," it explained.

UCM could only consider the demand for a separate secretariat for the Hills despite the presence of the Tribal Development Authority under Manipur Administration, as a proposal to publicly dismantle the administrative structure of the state and formation of a state within a state.

It then said: "Leaders of HAC should do well to remember that the Committee was formed in 1972 to look into the lack of amenities faced by Manipuri residing in remote areas of the state and ensure delivery of government development programmes to the same.

However, its actions have completely contradicted its functions.

"On the other hand, Article 371C of the Indian Constitution empowered the President to enact the Manipur Legislative Assembly (Hill Area Committee) .

The order, however, does not mention any provision for formation of a separate administration but that HAC was formed to assist in the procedures of Manipur Legislative Assembly," it maintained.

"UCM will always stand for the integrity of Manipur and it is well prepared to fend off any attempts made for disintegration of the state.

It is unfortunate that in the current political system, the elected leaders i.e., the MLAs are not upholding their responsibility to protect unity of the state but are involved in sectarian politics.

Thus, UCM is keeping such leaders under close watch to ensure the integrity of the state remains intact," the statement further conveyed.

UCM welcomes the state Assembly's actions towards the development of hills and the valley.

However, the agenda of the ADC Bill is to spark division among the different communities of the state.

As such, it would be better if steps are taken to strengthen the existing administrative set up of the state, the Committee asserted.


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