Interesting info from New Delhi;
Reading ILPS idea
Interesting developments in the last few days. Eventful Delhi trip ? Depends on which way one looks at it, but this is perhaps the very first time that something has come from Delhi on the popular demand that the Inner Line Permit System or a similar mechanism be enforced in the State. That this has come at a time when the Centre is bent on passing the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) is what makes it all that more interesting. The very suggestion from convenor of North East Democratic Alliance Himanta Biswa Sarma that the ILPS be enforced in Manipur when a team of Congress leaders from Manipur met Union Home Minister Amit Shah to voice their stand against CAB is indeed significant. The suggestion of Biswa Sarma also falls in line with the stand adopted by the Union Home Minister that CAB will not be enforced in areas which come under ILPS and the 6th Schedule of the Constitution. That the Centre has deemed it fit and proper that CAB would not be enforced in areas which come under ILPS and the 6th Schedule underlines the earlier assurance of the then Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh that special package will be given to those who opt to stay outside the North East region when the CAB is enacted. This should blunt the assertions of some BJP leaders and their underlings who have been shouting for all to hear that the CAB has nothing that can harm the interests of the people of Manipur and the North East. Again the very assurance from Amit Shah that special measures will be taken up to protect the interests of Manipur when CAB is enacted has given more substance to the voice of apprehension raised by MANPAC and the people. In short the voice of apprehension was not without foundation.
The next few days will tell how CAB will emerge and whether any measures will be taken up to protect the interests of Manipur and her people, but it should be acknowledged that Union Home Minister Amit Shah did not shy away from meeting the very set of people who have been spearheading the movement against CAB in Manipur. This is a point that should be acknowledged. It is also significant to note that the same Amit Shah did not hesitate to meet representatives of COCOMI who are at the forefront demanding that nothing should be included in the final pact with the NSCN (IM) which can dilute the understanding of Manipur as a geo-political reality. The ongoing dialogue with the NSCN (IM) may prove to be more dicey in the sense that here is a case where New Delhi will have to deal with two sets of interests but people who are indigenous to Manipur. COCOMI has already had a dialogue with the Union Home Minister a few days back, but nothing it seems is final. How things will unfold in the coming days is anybody’s guess, but significant to note that COCOMI is back and has raised the demand that a special session of the Assembly be convened before December 10. Granted the Assembly has already been summoned on December 18, but questions still remain on whether this is a special session or is the Winter Session of the Assembly. The interesting question is the importance attached to December 10.