TODAY -

SHITULF, TCLF and others endorse ATSUM's 'Solidarity Rally'
Finger of accusation pointed at Govt

Source: The Sangai Express

CCpur/Kpi, May 02 2023: The Sadar Hills Tribals Union on Land and Forest (SHITULF) and Tribal Churches Leaders Forum (TCLF) have endorsed the proposed May 3 "Solidarity Rally" of All Tribal Students Union Manipur (ATSUM) .

Endorsing the proposed rally that is likely to take place in all hill districts, SHITULF said the "Solidarity Rally" will demonstrate protest against the State Government's mishandling of various policies that are afflicting the rights and interests of the tribal people.

SHITULF said it considers the ST tag demand of the Meitei community, spearheaded by the Scheduled Tribe Demand Committee, Manipur World Meetei Council, Kangleipak Kanba Lup and others, an "illegitimate demand" and "a direct threat to the existence" of the people who are already recognised as Scheduled Tribe.

It also asserted that the unrest caused in the hill districts due to Reserved Forests and Protected Forests issue is a "threat to the security and existence of the hill tribal people'' and it sees it as an attempt to "grab" land.

It claimed that the policy of the State Government in this regard amounts to "total disregard" for the provisions of the Indian Forests Act, 1927, and other Forests Acts passed by the Govt from time to time.

It claimed that the unrest in hill districts is a result of the "use of political and majoritarian power" by the State Government in "contravention" of the prevailing laws and rules of the land.

It appealed to the people of Kangpokpi district to take part in the rally proposed on May 3 .

Likewise, the Tribal Churches Leaders Forum (TCLF), Manipur has also endorsed the proposed rally of ATSUM.

It stated that the proposed solidarity march is to collectively protect the social, political, and religious interests of the tribal people.

Meanwhile, all prominent civil society organisations and student bodies in Churachandpur have also endorsed ATSUM's proposed solidarity march.

In Churachandpur, the rally will start from 11 am tomorrow at Lamka Public Ground and conclude at Mini Secretariat Complex, Tuibong, according to a statement issued by a joint body of student organisations.

The student bodies said the rally will protest the demand for ST status for the Meitei and the order of the Manipur High Court which directed the Government to send recommendations required for consideration of the same by the Centre.

The rally, under the theme "Come Now, Let Us Reason Together", will also demonstrate protest against numerous contentious issues including [eviction drives at] Reserved Forest, Protected Forest, Wild Life Sanctuaries, and Wetlands, they said, appealing to all to join the rally.


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