A one line statement from Amit Shah;
Message from Home Minister
Union Home Minister Amit Shah not only took the points put forward seriously but also assured that the Centre will strive to work out a model to protect the interests of Manipur and her people-this is what the Manipur People Against Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (MANPAC) had to say after a late night meeting with Amit Shah on December 3. This is the point that MANPAC delivered to the media via a two paged statement on December 4. The rest of the statement dealt with how MANPAC put down its point in clear cut terms to the Union Home Minister. A two paged statement having only one sentence on how Amit Shah responded to the call of MANPAC was a sort of a downer. This is more so given the fact that the Union Cabinet had given the go ahead to table CAB in Parliament in the morning of December 3 and surely a one line response from the Union Home Minister was not something which the people waited to hear. What MANPAC put across to Amit Shah is something which the people of Manipur would be aware of. Everyone knows where MANPAC and the people of Manipur, barring some BJP Ministers and MLAs, stand as far as the CAB goes, and it would have made the meeting all that more meaningful if only the response of Amit Shah had been given more minutely. Or is it a case of the Union Home Minister only listening to the case of MANPAC and uttering only the few words that made up the one line sentence, as stated earlier ?
On the other hand, if one looks at the brighter side of the meeting, the one line sentence may have much meaning for it was none other than the Union Home Minister who assured that best efforts would be taken up to ensure that CAB does not hurt Manipur and her people when it is enacted in Parliament. This seems to fall in line with the stand of Chief Minister N Biren, who has been maintaining that the Centre would be urged to insert a clause that will protect the interests of the State and her people. The clause rider was not specifically mentioned by Amit Shah but this seems the more likely step that the Centre may take, if one goes by the assurance that the New Delhi would study all the options to see how the proposed Bill will not affect Manipur and her people. Now that the CAB has been okayed by the Union Cabinet, it is most likely to be introduced in the Lok Sabha soon and then the Rajya Sabha. This is where it will become interesting to see how the four MPs, including the lone Rajya Sabha MP and another nominated by the President respond to the moment. Absenteeism may not be an option as the Prime Minister himself had earlier urged the BJP MPs to be regular in Parliament and the party in power may crack the whip and lay down that all its MPs should be present when CAB is tabled in Parliament.