No solution to Sadar Hills even after fourth round of talks

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IMPHAL, Sept 1: The ongoing indefinite economic blockade along the national highways imposed by Sadar Hills Districthood Demand Committee (SHDDC) will remain unchanged as no solution could be brought during the fourth round of talks between the Chief Minister and representatives of SHDDC convened today at around 8:30 am at CM Bungalow.

The representatives of SHDDC were led by vice president Thangkam Lupheng, vice-president Gokul Sharma and joint secreatary Dona Vaiphei.

During the meeting, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi assured that the demand of SHDDC would be fulfilled as soon as the final report of recently constituted Committee on Re-organisation of Administration and Police District Boundaries headed by the chief secretary is submitted to the state government.

Talking to media person after the meeting, vice president Thangkam Lupheng stated that even though there is a positive response from the Chief Minister regarding the creation of full-fledged Sadar Hills district, the committee is not in a position to withdraw the agitations until the assurance is translated into action, he asserted.

“We are not demanding assurance from the state government; we want only districthood status of Sadar Hills which the state government had already agreed”, contended the spokesperson of the committee.

He further reiterated that they will continue with their agitations until their demands are fulfilled by the state government.

The fourth round talks was also attended by the three MLAs of Sadar Hills, namely Thangminlen Kipgen, Haokholet Kipgen and Doukhomang Haokip.

It may be mentioned that state cabinet meeting convened on August 23 has approved for the constitution of Committee on Re-organisation of Administration and Police District Boundaries to be headed by the state chief secretary and comprised of DGP Manipur,  Principal Secretary (RD & PR), Commissioner Revenue, and commissioner (Home & Hills) as members of the committee.

Besides, the newly constituted committee is on active operations to find out the possible ways to bring an amicable solution to end the existing agitations of both Kuki bodies and Naga bodies over the issues of Sadar Hills.

On the other hand, the United Naga Council in particular, has been vitriolic and has leveled allegations against the state government on Sadar Hills issue. There is urgent need to maintain tranquility amongst Nagas and Kukis in the state.

Sit-in-protests are also held in Imphal area against the blockade. There is a possibility that any stray incident related to the bandh / blockade may incite tensions in the state.

Considering all this facts, the state cabinet has recently approved the constitution of Committee on Re-organisation of Administration and Police District Boundaries to pacify the situation and also to bring a long lasting solution, an official source said.

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