ST tag for Meiteis – A perspective!

Ngangom Junior Luwang
Contd from prev issue
10. Now that, we have the long demanded ILP in place vide Presidential Order No. S.O. 4433(E) dated December 11, 2019 issued under Sections 2 and 4 of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1973, certain concerns of the Manipuri elite have been taken care of, though I see it more as a formality. Objectively speaking, a case for an urgent ST tag for our own survival has been created by using this ST Vs. Non-ST narrative, while the actual immediate threat to our survival is the menace of drug trafficking, mass corruption, electoral malpractices, opportunism & sycophancy etc. In fact, we seem to be conveniently barking up the wrong we vs. they narrative, instead of rooting out the other important and immediate threats to our livelihood and existence.
11. The way forward, short of the ST Tag, should be making adequate changes in the MLR & LR Act, 1960 by insisting on the 1982 amendment and introduction of Section 14A on more or less similar lines to put adequate restrictions on valley land owning (i.e. with prior government permission). This should take care of our immediate concern, if at all it is a concern. The rest of the concerns can also be taken care of by making appropriate changes in law and ST tag, howsoever alluring it could be, is not always the only solution.