TODAY -

Another round of movement : The divide over the 3 Bills
- The Sangai Express Editorial :: February 19 2016 -



The interesting question is whether Imphal and the valley areas of Manipur will again witness the days of 2015 when the pro-ILP movement was at its peak.

This poser is important in the face of the fact that the Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit System (JCILPS) has initiated another round of movement to pressurise the Government to turn the three Bills passed on August 31, 2015 to Acts.

Significant to note too that there is no indication that the bodies of the nine people killed in Churachandpur in the protest against the three Bills will be buried anytime soon.

That the latest move of the JCILPS has come close on the heels of the strong statement from Nagaland Chief Minister TR Zeliang makes the new development all that more interesting.

Significant to note that the State unit of the Naga People’s Front too has come out strongly endorsing the statement of TR Zeliang in the face of the strong criticisms from the State Government and the JCILPS.

Difficult to say which way the wind will blow, but disturbing to note that an issue which should have united the people is today tearing them apart.

As mentioned many times in this column, the prime goal of the JCILPS is to protect the interest of the indigenous people but it should be more than obvious that the three Bills passed by the State Assembly have not cut ice with every section of society.

This is what is worrying.

So is Manipur headed for another spell of stormy days ?

Not clear whether the three Bills will be given the green signal by the President of India while on the other hand it is more than clear that the JCILPS will not budge from their stand.

On the other hand there is the question of the people of Churachandpur.

In such a situation the only loser will be the people of Manipur. Ironic it is but a movement launched in the interest of the indigenous people of the land is today threatening the very set of indigenous people.

The divide between the people inhabiting the valley areas and the hills cannot be more ugly and clear than the present.

Or does the divide have something to do more than the three Bills ?

A question which everyone should ask themselves sincerely and diligently.

This is not the time to take refuge under some high sounding slogan but to get down to the business of minutely studying the divide amongst the different communities and accordingly take steps to address this question.

A sorry tale it is for Manipur.



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