IMPHAL, Aug 25: Chief Minister Okram Ibobi has assured to bring a concrete solution at the earliest to the prevailing imbroglio arising out of demand for Sadar Hills at the Assembly House today during the second day of 11th session of 9th Manipur Legislative Assembly.
He said this will be without any bias towards any community.
The Chief Minister was replying to a short duration discussion motion moved by opposition leader Radhabinod Koijam which was also participated by MLAs from both ruling and opposition benches.
Further, Chief Minister Ibobi stated that the government cannot succumb to pressures, which he observed would create room for violent activities in the future by other groups or organizations in echoing their demands.
Government’s decision will be based on ‘administrative convenience’ and not harm any single community’s interest, he contended.
“Taking final decision on the issue based on community favoritism is not a wise thing”, said Chief Minister, O. Ibobi Singh. He urged all communities not to bring up issues or demand as Kuki’s, Naga’s or Meitei’s land which he said would come in the way of the principle of‘administrative convenient’.
He appealed to the agitating SHDDC and UNC to co-operate with the government in its venture.
Ibobi said, “No government wants to solve a problem at the cost of creating another problem”.
Further referring to the term ‘our land’ as used by different communities, he asserted that it was unfortunate and ignorant. According to him, all land in the state belongs to the government of Manipur.
Clarifying on his recent statement for granting districthood to other districts that invited criticism from the SHDDC alleging his statement was an attempt to divert the Sadar hills issue, the Chief Minister maintained that the government is seriously considering the feasibilities to provide the Sadar hills at their level best.
The Government has discussed feasibilities on forming of neutral committee headed by members outside the state, forming a cabinet sub-committee but these committees could take times longer than expected and not less than a year. The best option before is the ‘District Reorganization Committee on Administrative and Police District Boundary’ which will he headed by chief secretary and assisted by DGP, commissioner RD and PR etc. the committee is intended to submit their report in three months time, further said the Chief Minister.
While opening the discussion opposition leader, Radhabinod Koijam, termed the demand of the Sadar hills district demand committee as genuine but said that the demand is full of ramification and a consensus decision must be taken. He further observed that none persistent in projecting of issue as another factor for the delay in granting for the last few decades.
The opposition leader said the delay in granting the prolonged demand by successive governments has turned the issue ‘cancerous’ and to avoid any fatality he urged the need to find a way out now for the sake of the integrity of Manipur.
He also suggested that government can seek opinion and advice from all political parties along with the major civil bodies in the state. Terming the frequent blockade imposing along the highway for any issue as unfair for the general populace in the valley, he appealed all the blockade sponsors to lift it before frustration grip the peoples mind.
Senior opposition MLA, O. Joy Singh said “it is quite unfortunate if somebody claim this is our land”. While acknowledging the demand for Sadar hills, he asserted that government should only focus on ‘administrative convenience’.
The senior opposition MLA also observed the need for creation of more districts given the situation of the growth level of the state and suggesting the constitution of a ‘commission’ into the Sadar hills issue.
He also appealed the blockade sponsors to relax the blockade and urged all section to refrain from violence.
MLA, Morung Makunga, also suggested for permanent solution to the issue.
Kangpokpi MLA cum chairman HAC, Thangmilien Kipgen maintained that Sadar hills issue has become “Political football”. Citing the sentiments of the Sadar hills people triggered due to prolonged delay, he urged the immediate need to declaring Sadar hills into full fledged district and suggested conducting of re-organization and exclude all inconveniences places after the declaration. Haokholet Kipgen also strongly urged for declaring the district hood to Sadar hills without any delay terming it as “legitimate demand”.
Many MLAs from both ruling benches also acknowledged the creation of Sadar hills as genuine and draws the attention of the government to resolved the issue as per ‘administrative convenience’.
In the meantime, Phungyar MLA, Wungnaoshang Keishing also drew the attention of the house not to concede only to pressure in the wake of the demand for separate districthood for Phungyar.
The government will draft a report as conclusion of the discussion tomorrow incorporating all the sentiments.
Other MLA’s who took part in the discussion includes Dr.Ng. Bijoy, RK. Anand, N. Mangi, V. Hangkhanlien, Shyamkumar.