TODAY -

MANPAC lines up mass protest, 18 hrs bandh
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, November 17 2019: Manipur People Against Citizenship Amendment Bill (MANPAC) will hold a mass sit-in protest at Khwairamband Keithel tomorrow followed by an 18 hour total shutdown from midnight of November 18 till 6 pm of November 19.This was stated by convener of MANPAC, Yumnamcha Dilipkumar during a joint press conference of NEFIP (North East Forum for Indigenous People) and MANPAC held at Apunba Imagi Meiheroi Sinpanglup (AIMS) Kwakeithel Bazar today evening.

The announcement came amidst the possibility of the Citizenship Amendment Bill being introduced during the winter session of the Parliament which is scheduled to start tomorrow.

Speaking to media persons, Dilipkumar said that the Centre is keen on passing the Bill despite strong opposition from the North East region.



MANPAC lines up mass protest, 18 hrs bandh
MANPAC lines up mass protest, 18 hrs bandh


Even as the people in the State are busy raging against the threat of the Naga peace process on the State, the Centre is looking forward to passing the Bill in Parliament.

The CAB is listed as item number 16 in the business list of the winter Parliament session.

MANPAC will fully support the initiatives of the NEFIP and spearhead the mass movement against the CAB in Manipur, he said appealing the MPs of the State to openly oppose the Bill and show their concern for the people in Parliament.

NEFIP president Ningthouja Lancha who was present at the press meet asserted that the Centre is introducing the Bill 'without' any changes in the content and consulting the stakeholders.

The Bill may not contain any clause or provision that protects the indigenous people of the North East despite the assurances given by the Government earlier, he said.

The Bill, if introduced without any provision to protect the indigenous people, will be the biggest blunder of the Centre towards the North East States and NEFIP takes this very seriously, he said.

NEFIP, which consists of more than 250 organisations of the North East region has been vehemently opposing the Bill since it was introduced in the last Parliament session.

The Bill threatens the very existence and interest of the indigenous people, he said.

Asserting that the Bill will be 'genocidal' for the indigenes of the entire North-East region, he recalled that on August 9, memoranda addressed to the Prime Minister were submitted through the heads of the States apprising him about the devastating effects the Bill would have in the region.

Memoranda were again submitted to the Chief Ministers of the region on October 3, he added.

"Giving citizenship to the refugees from religious minority communities from other countries who are in fact economic labourers will have adverse impact on the North East indigenous population and their status," said Ningthouja Lancha.

NEFIP believes that the Bill, if it becomes an Act, will lead to extinction of the indigenous people and their identity, he said.

NEFIP with its constituent organisations and public is launching agitations in the entire North-East region from November 18, he said urging the Members of Parliament from the region to oppose the Bill.

It may be noted that the CAB was passed in the Lok Sabha on January 8, 2019 but was never introduced in the Rajya Sabha.

The Bill seeks to grant citizenship to refugees from religious minority communities like Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi or Christian of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, and Pakistan.

Meanwhile, Left parties have decided to support the MANPAC's 18 hours bandh.

The decision was taken during a joint meeting of the Left parties, CPI, CPI (M), RSP and AIFB at Irawat Bhawan, Imphal, said a statement issued by CPI(M) Manipur State secretary Kshetrimayum Santa.

The Left parties will also send a letter to the Central leadership for floor coordination on Indo-Naga Peace talk and CAB.

CPI Manipur State secretary L Sotinkumar, CPI(M) secretary Ksh Santa, AIFB secretary Khomdram Gyaneshwar and RSP secretary Kangjam attended the joint meeting, it said.


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