ST demand: Send recommendations, says World Meetei Council to CM


By Our Staff Reporter
IMPHAL, May 21 : Saying that the situation of contemporary Meetei/Meitei is similar to the proverbial "Sandrambee Imadi Ngaksam Youre", the World Meetei Council (WMC) has urged Chief Minister N Biren Singh to send the socio-economic and ethnographic reports of the  Meetei/Meitei to the Centre as soon as possible to enlist the ethnic group in the Scheduled Tribe (ST) list of the Constitution before the commencement of the 2026 delimitation exercise.
The Council, in a statement, said that Meetei/Meitei may never get the ST status if the delimitation is done in Manipur without giving the Constitutional safeguard ( in the form of ST) to the ethnic group.
Saying the Central Government has been seeking the recommendation from the successive State Governments to verify whether the Meetei/Meitei can be given the ST status since 2013, the Council stated that no recommendation, however,  has been sent as of yet.
Further stating that the settlement areas of Meetei/Meitei will go on shrinking if no corrective measure is taken up , the WMC added that the Meetei/Meitei may not  be able to reside even at the 3.5 per cent of unreserved areas in the five valley districts if the Government doesn't act on the issue fast.
Meetei/Meitei will become like a refugee in their own State in future and their culture and tradition will disappear gradually if the ethnic group is not given Constitutional protection in the form of ST, the Council cautioned.
The issue of ST is very serious as Meetei/Meitei may even lose its political power if there is no corrective actions, the WMC said and added that a Meetei/Meitei may never become a Chief Minister again if the strength of Meetei/Meitei MLAs is outnumbered by other communities .
The 10 Kuki MLAs are openly demanding separate administration for their people even at this time when Meetei/Meitei is the majority group by killing and driving out the Meetei/Meitei from several places and the Chief Minister cannot say anything about it, the WMC said and asked all to reflect what  would happen to the Meetei/Meitei people if they become a minority group.
Continuing that the fate of Meetei/Meitei would be very grim if they are not given the ST status before the 2026 delimitation, the WMC maintained that granting ST status to the ethnic group after the delimitation would also be meaningless.
Meetei/Meitei people, if not given the ST tag, will become like the Tripuris in Tripura who despite being protected by the Constitution are unable to live like their former self, the WMC said while urging the Chief Minister to send the recommendation.
Meanwhile, the WMC said that they carried out a protest demonstration demanding enlistment of Meetei/Meitei  in the ST list with the students of Grace Reach Academy, Hiyanglam and Bal Vidya Bhawan, Wabagai.
The students expressed their disappointment over the failure to sent recommendation by the successive State Governments, it added.