Imphal, August 09 2017: Joining the agitation being spearheaded by the Kangleipak Students’ Association (KSA), a large number of students today locked the gate of Imphal West DC office complex on the pretext that the district administration has failed to translate into action Chief Minister N Biren’s assurance given on the floor of the Manipur Legislative Assembly recently regarding protection of indigenous people of the land.
A large number of students wearing school/college uniforms stormed the DC office complex and locked its gate at around 1.20 pm.
There was some altercation between the students and security personnel who were guarding the office.
The students shouted slogans like “Indigenous people must be protected”, “Non-locals should not be allowed to contest elections in the State” etc.
They also carried placards/banners which read as “Don’t protect non-local people for vote bank politics” etc.
Speaking to media persons by the sideline of the protest demonstration, KSA president Moirangthem Lakshman said that their sustained movement is aimed at enacting a constitutional safeguard to protect indigenous people from the onslaught of incessant influx.
KSA has been demanding deletion of the names of all non-local people from the State’s electoral roll as well as reservation of all the Assembly seats for indigenous people starting from the eight Assembly segments where non-local people have overwhelming presence, Lakshman said.
The Chief Minister stated on the floor of the State Assembly on July 31 that due procedures would be initiated after the Assembly session was over to delete names of non-local people registered in the State’s electoral roll.
The Chief Minister further proposed deputing a joint team of all political parties including representatives of KSA to New Delhi to urge the Central Government for reservation of all the Assembly seats for indigenous people, he claimed.
But there is no sign of translating these assurances/proposals into action even though it has been days since the Assembly session was prorogued.
Since it is the question of survival of indigenous people, KSA would never back off from the ongoing mass movement until their demands are fulfilled, he added.
Later, additional police personnel arrived and broke open the lock locked by KSA volunteers.
Nonetheless, the students also distributed a pamphlet regarding the KSA’s ongoing movement.
The pamphlet says that official documents like driving licences, domicile certificates are issued to non-local people without any verification by concerned officials if they are offered some money.
While Manipur remains a captive market, all the commercial activities have been monopolised by non-local people.
An independent survey carried out by KSA found that many non-local people own land and have permanent settlement apart from registering their names in the electoral rolls of Wangkhei AC, Kangpokpi AC, Jiribam AC, Thangmeiband AC, Sagolband AC, Sugnu AC, Bishnupur AC and Uripok AC, says the pamphlet.
Source: The Sangai Express