TODAY -

Will not accept Bill without modification: Tribal bodies
Source: The Sangai Express

CCpur, July 22 2018: Several apex tribal bodies have on Sunday asserted that until and unless their suggestions for modification on the 'contentious' Manipur People's Bill 2018 are acceded to, they will 'in no way' accept the Bill which the Government is likely to pass in the ongoing monsoon session of the State Assembly.

"We have held series of consultations with the JCILPS and attended at least two meetings convened by the Government.

But, despite the assurance to incorporate our suggestions, the Bill that was tabled at the Assembly does not reflect those assurances," said R Sanga, a member representing the tribal bodies at a press briefing held at MPC Office.

Beside other suggestions and modifications to the contents of the Manipur People's Bill, withdrawal of two pending Bills - a residue of the infamous 3 'anti-tribal' Bills of 2015 - the MLR&LR (7th Amendment) Bill, 2015 and the Manipur Shops and Establishment (2nd Amendment) Bill, 2015 before introduction of any new Bill was one of the major conditions demanded by the tribal bodies, he said.

The tribal apex bodies including, Kuki Inpi Manipur, Zomi Council, United Naga Council, Hmar Inpui, Mizo Peoples Convention, Komrem Union, and Aimol Committee have on July 12 presented their case for the same before the official drafting committee but, the Bill tabled this week by the Chief Minister confirms that neither the demand for withdrawal of two pending Bills nor the suggestions to be inserted in the new Bill are listened to, he said.

The MP Bill 2018, which is now with the Hill Areas Committee (HAC) as the Government has referred the Bill to the committee to avoid any procedural lapses is likely to be returned tomorrow.

As the Bill is with the HAC, the appex bodies have submitted a four-point changes to be reflected in the final draft of the Bill before the HAC members, and sought their intervention to press the Government to withdraw the two pending Bills before the new Bill referred to the committee on July 20, 2018 is returned to the House.

KIM, ZC, HI, MPC JAC-AATB and ATSUM also requested the HAC Chairman to move a motion in the House for extension of the time given for submission of its report with the condition that the date for withdrawal of the two pending Bills be finalised before the HAC Chairman presents their report on the Bill.

Concerned with the little time granted to review the Bill, the tribal leaders representing the apex bodies said that they will not accept the Bill which fails to incorporate their suggestions and honour their requirements.

Hmar Inpui president Joseph Lalrothang and MPC representatives have also called upon the general public to remain prepared and stay alert to stand against any 'injustice' committed to the tribal community.


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