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Seminar on ‘Understanding Autonomous District Councils of Manipur’ held in Delhi

New Delhi : A day long national seminar on ‘Understanding Autonomous District Councils of Manipur’ was organized recently by the Naga People Union for Civil Liberties at Gandhi Peace Foundation Auditorium, New Delhi.

The seminar was organized in response to several-issues being faced by the present ADC’s in Manipur, as stated in the press statement.

Dr. Yaronsho Ngalung, Chairman of Ukhrul district ADCs, had deliberated as a main resource person and the entire session of the seminar was chaired by Dr. Lam Khan Piang, Assistant Professor, Centre for the Study of Social Systems, Jawaharlal Nehru University.

The seminar focused on the existing structural- issues of the ADCs in Manipur and emphasized on devolutions of legislative and judiciary powers the same way Autonomous District Councils in Meghalaya, Mizoram, Tripura and Assam were empowered.

In spite of the fact that the Autonomous District councils of Manipur were created under the Manipur (Hill Areas) District Council Act, 1971, the ADCs have never been empowered in practice/spirit.

In this seminar, Lakpachui Siro, one of the organizing committee, highlighted the issue of political mis-representations in the Manipur legislative assembly wherein, the total number of tribal representation is just nineteen, instead of forty percent of tribal populations in Manipur.

The present Autonomous District Councils has become a whims and fancies of the Chief Minister of Manipur in the form of implementing agent of the state of Government only.

The present ADC’s is grappling with the central and state government for their right to autonomous rules.

Sensing the various structural issues encountered on their governance, it has been brought to light that empowering in the form of granting a ‘Sixth Schedule’ status would be an immediate remedy to look into their grievances.

The discussion further revealed the shortage of fund which has unable the government to function properly apart from several poor infrastructures.

President of Naga People for Civil Liberties, Kahorngam Zimik, asserted that there is nothing wrong when some scholars says “the Sixth Schedule is an appeasement policy to counter/contain the growing insurgency problems in Northeast India.”

W.S. Machutmi pointed out that separation of administration in the form of autonomous would one way enable the tribal communities in Manipur.

The press statement observed that the fabric of ‘Fifth and Six Schedule’ speaks about political accommodation of different tribal communities into the main-stream politics of India.

But unfortunately, ADC’s in Manipur is seen entangling between the centre and state governments playing vested political games.

In the light of recent nine- tribal youths killing in Churachandpur district by armed police men, the tribals in Manipur were reminded of how they had been exploited by the valley-centric state government socially, economically and politically and the right way to escape from such kind of repressive/suppressive forces is to have a separate administration in the form of ‘Six Schedule’. (ANI)