Thursday, June 13, 2024

Landless tribals in Meghalaya


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Apropos the news item published in your esteemed daily (Nov 24, 2012) under the caption, ‘Meghalaya has highest number of landless tribals in the country,’ and subsequent reaction on the issue expressed by the Editor herself in her article titled, ‘Meghalaya’s Landless Population: Who cares?’ is definitely a welcome gesture. The Editor narrated some facts behind such aberrations vis-à-vis the indigenous population of the state of Meghalaya.

Although, the population density of Meghalaya takes fourth position amongst North Eastern States then how has the tribal population gone up? Has this arisen due to the ethnic culture of the indigenous tribe? Or, is there any undiscovered fact disguisedly working against tribal interests? I feel that if the Government of Meghalaya takes responsibility then the percentage of landless tribes in Meghalaya will definitely decrease considerably.

In this context, also I would like to seek clarification from the author of the above mentioned article for the word ‘dkhar’ mentioned in a sentence – ”When the ‘dkhar’, who were assumed to have………….’, for my knowledge only. The esteemed newspaper which has the highest circulation in Shiilong besides other areas and the readers, irrespective of any class have the fundamental right to know the meaning of the said word in order to get full picture of the article, precisely

Yours etc.,

PB Das,


The author replies: The word ‘dkhar’ is used by Khasis to mean non-tribals. It is simply a word which is neither pejorative nor nuanced in any way. A non-tribal who has lived in Meghalaya would know what the word dkhar means. The sentence in the article is self explanatory and needs no further elucidation.

On human rights & moral education


The demand for introducing human rights as a subject in the school curriculum, by the National Human Rights Commission, Chairperson, Justice (Retd.) Aftab Hussain Saikia, is a demand long overdue. There was also an idea mooted by the NCERT to introduce moral education in the schools. All concerned should take these suggestions seriously and introduce topics relating to human rights and moral values in our schools both at the primary and secondary levels.

Considering the rise of crimes against women and children and its impact on families and the society, educators should take initiative in this regard. Human rights and human values, in fact, are related. Degradation of human values will definitely lead to violation of human rights. Increasing disregard for the other person’s rights and happiness leads to sexual harassment, rapes, murders, child abuse, human trafficking, domestic violence etc.

Honesty in personal and public life and justice in personal and social dealings will go a long way in getting rid so many dishonest practices and scams we are so familiar with these days. The importance of values: personal, social, religious and ethnic is to be inculcated into the minds of our children at an early age onwards if we want to make our children aware of the damage these practices can cause to persons and society at large. Peaceful and harmonious existence with all is the need of the hour. It is high time our educators, parents as well as NGOs dealing with students’ welfare take steps to educate our children on these.

Yours etc.,

Fr. Mani K.M.


St. George Secondary School,

Samanda, East Garo Hills



Apropos the letter to the editor in The Shillong Times, dated 29th November, 2012, written by a person claiming to be Shkembor Laloo clan (kur laloo) residing in Mission Compound, Jowai, we the undersigned want to clarify that there is no such person by the name Shkembor Laloo residing in our locality. Such false names are used only to tarnish the image of the Laloo clan of Mission Compound, Jowai, by someone who claims to be a Laloo.

Yours etc.,

Violin M Laloo

& Waida D Laloo

For ka Kur (clan) Laloo of

Mission Compound, Jowai


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