THOUBAL | Dec 14 : The state Congress party has never remained idle; we always acted in public interest, said opposition leader and former chief minister Okram Ibobi Singh at a sit in protest held at Thoubal Mela ground today. The protest organised by the Thoubal Congress Block Committee demanded that the framework agreement between the government of India and NSCN (IM) be made public.
Speaking at the meeting, Ibobi Singh said that after the Centre and the NSCN (IM) signed the framework agreement in 2015, the state ruling Congress government urged the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and interlocutor RN Ravi that the frame work agreement be disclosed in the interest of the public of the state.
He said further that BJP-led government and N Biren criticising the sit in protests organised by the Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee urging for the framework disclosure is most unfortunate. “Is it because of us being the opposition now that Biren is speaking in such a manner at public places criticising the Congress party, we never remained idle in this NSCN (IM) framework issue,” Ibobi Singh said. “Biren said that the Congress is taking political mileage in this issue, I urge him and the BJP to take all the credit and let him disclose the framework agreement and we will stop the protest from tomorrow” he said.
He said further that Th Muivah’s bid to enter Manipur was halted by the Congress party then and Biren himself was a minister of the ruling party at that time. He seemed to have forgotten that he was part and parcel of the party which put its foot down with the Centre in the issue of the NSCN (IM) which compromised the territorial integrity of the state.
Mentioning reasons why the Congress party did not join the drafting committee, Ibobi said that certain conditions put up to the state BJP and the NPF have not been attended to. He questioned if the NPF has given a statement that the territorial boundary of the state will not be compromised and will they be part of the delegate team which will submit a memorandum to the Centre in the regard. If the BJP and the NPF clarify these questions, then the Congress will join the drafting committee.
Nungba MLA, Gaikhangam speaking at the protest said that Chief Minister Biren criticising the party on the Nupi Lal observance is unbecoming of a chief minister. “Why is Biren so angry? Is not this issue for all and in the interest of Manipur, he said that the framework agreement will not be harmful and takes it lightly, the Congress party cannot take it lightly,” he added that if administrative, cultural and financial autonomy is mentioned in the framework agreement, it will compromise Manipur, he said. All the state BJP MLAs reportedly attended the meeting.
Source: Imphal Free Press