Pro-ILP groups make presentation to Meghalaya Govt, CM happy

Focus now shifts to spot  entry verification

Chief Minister Mukul Sangma in consulation with the pro-ILP pressure groups at Main Secretariat on Tuesday.    (ST)
Chief Minister Mukul Sangma in consulation with the pro-ILP pressure groups at Main Secretariat on Tuesday. (ST)

SHILLONG: The 13 pro-ILP pressure groups want the inner line permit (ILP) system in Meghalaya to be one of spot entry verification. They maintain that the new mechanism which they have suggested will be more effective than the ILP system prevailing under the Eastern Bengal Frontier Regulation Act, 1873.

They gave their suggestions to the Meghalaya Government on Tuesday in a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.

HNYF general secretary Sadon K Blah said that as per the conventional ILP, there was a need to set up licence offices and licence officers in all the States of the country so that people who planned to come to Meghalaya could to apply for permit from these offices. He said that the mechanism which they have suggested would have spot entry verification.

The Chief Minister said the Government was firm on its commitment with utmost sincerity and dedication to tackle the problem of influx and illegal immigration. He said that the suggestion put forward by the 13 pressure groups to a great extent were basically implementable.

“We are very happy with all those few exercise since January 15 this year. There has been a comprehensive suggestion on the part of the civil society organizations. Based on the recommendations, the Government will do due diligences in studying the recommendations to put in place a comprehensive mechanism to address the problem,” the Chief Minister said.

“Most of the suggestions can be structured and given a concrete shape for implementation in a more comprehensive manner. Therefore, it is time give shape for actual implementation of this mechanism,” the Chief Minister said.

He also said that the Government would have to ensure that the mechanism which would be implemented did not come into conflict with any existing laws passed by Parliament or with any provision enshrine in the Constitution.

Sangma also assured that the Government would be moving and take all necessary steps to implement this new mechanism.

“The model which we have suggested is that which has been implemented in other States where the ILP system prevails. The only thing which we have avoided is to have the licence and licence officer which requires a pre-entry permission. The measure which we have suggested is even more stringent than that which is in force in those States where ILP system is in existence,” Blah told reporters after the second round of meeting with the State Government on Tuesday.

According to the HNYF secretary, the Chief Minister had indicated that the Government would have no problem in implementing the spot entry permission system for people of various categories like businessman, tourists, students, migrant labourers and others who entered the State. Asked if it could be concluded that the3 new mechanism was not under the ambit of the regulation of 1873, he said that the Government had expressed difficulties in implementing ILP under the 1873 regulation due to various reasons.

“Considering the urgency of the matter, they feel there is need to come up with a mechanism to check the entrance of the people from outside. We are confident that this mechanism which they have suggested would show positive results in a short span of time,” the HNYF general secretary said.

Asked about the grounds which had compelled the scaling down of their demand on ILP, he said there were many factors including the repeal of the act which kept Garo Hills out of its purview and the requirement to get the consent of Parliament to implement the regulation.

On the issue how the issue of transit would be solved, , he said that anybody who entered the State to go to another State will be issued a transit permit of 48 hours.

He said that this new mechanism would need separate legislations on one or two points while adding that the majority of the provisions which they had suggested were in accordance as per the existing laws.

“The lapse is in the implementation of the existing laws right from the check gates. We have checks gates which have failed to carry out its functions as mandated,” Blah said.

He said that the only important thing is for the Government to do was to speed up to implement the various mechanisms suggested by them.

“The mechanism which we have suggested is within the legislative and administrative ambit of the State Government,” HNYF general secretary said.

When asked if there was any time frame to implement the new mechanism, he said that the Government would take some time since they had submitted six pages of recommendations.

“There are many smaller points which are very important which the Government would have to deliberate in detail,” he said while adding that the Government had indicated that they were going to need only two more meetings before they started implementation of the new mechanism.

FKJGP president Joe Marwein said as per the new mechanism, the Government would have to intensify the checking at both the entry and exit points into the State.

“We have proposed for setting up of registration counters which should be equipped with all the latest technologies. We feel that the whole procedure of issuing the permit should also be computerized,” FKJGP president said.

He also claimed that the proposed modified ILP which had been suggested would be more effective than the original ILP.

“The Government has assured to study in details the suggestion which we have submitted to avoid any kind contradiction with the various laws passed by Parliament,” he said.

Marwein also said that this was not the last meeting and they would again meet the Government to discuss to finalize the mechanism which would revolve around the suggestion which they had submitted.

When asked what would be name of this new mechanism which they have suggested, he said that they had not really thought what would be the name of this mechanism.

“We still feel that this is an ILP since there an issuing of the permit. It could be termed as a modified ILP,” FKJGP president said.

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