TODAY -

Addl CS' notice peeves HAC
Source: The Sangai Express

Imphal, December 18 2021: The Hill Areas Committee (HAC) has taken strong exception to the notice issued by the Additional Chief Secretary (Tribal Affairs and Hills) which convened a meeting with Members of the HAC at 1 pm on November 29 last.

Sources informed that a meeting of HAC Members and representatives was convened on November 29 on the proposed Manipur (Hill Areas) Autonomous District Councils Bill 2021 by the Additional Chief Secretary (Tribal Affairs and Hills) who is a bureaucrat officer of the State Government.

After the meeting notice was issued on November 27, the HAC Members held an emergency meeting on November 29.The emergency meeting deliberated on whether Members of the HAC which is a constitutional authority should attend a meeting convened by a bureaucrat officer of the Government.

The emergency meeting noted that the State Legislature of which the Hill Areas Committee is a part and parcel is supreme as per provisions of the Constitution of India and as such it was unprecedented for a Government official to convene any meeting of HAC Members.

The HAC Members who attended the emergency meeting agreed that the meeting notice issued by the Additional Chief Secretary (Tribal Affairs and Hills) directly contradicted the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Manipur Legislative Assembly and contravened all conventions followed by the Legislature since Manipur attained Statehood in 1972 .

The emergency meeting also noted that no bureaucrat officer of the Government is empowered under any rule to issue notice requesting or summoning any HAC Member to attend any meeting outside the precinct of the State Assembly under the Rule 224, the sources conveyed.

The HAC further resolved and reiterated that a special session of the State Legislative Assembly should be convened at the earliest for introducing and considering the Manipur (Hill Areas) Autonomous District Councils Bill, 2021 .

A copy of the resolutions adopted at the emergency meeting was also sent to the Additional Chief Secretary (Tribal Affairs and Hills) by the HAC Deputy Secretary.

Later, the Additional Chief Secretary (Tribal Affairs and Hills) issued a press note which was published in some sections of local dailies on December 1.Through the press note, the Additional Chief Secretary (TA & Hills) expressed regret that the HAC citing procedural matters not related to the meeting convened on November 29 refrained from attending the same meeting but the intent of the Government was to amicably resolve the issues arising out of the proposed Manipur (Hill Areas) Autonomous District Councils Bill, 2021 and take all possible measures to mitigate the issue.

Regarding the press note issued by the Additional Chief Secretary (TA & Hills), the HAC held another meeting on December 15 and condemned the same press note as unwarranted which not only undermined the constitutional authority and amounted to contempt of the Manipur Legislative Assembly's HAC, conveyed the sources.


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