Sunday, February 25, 2024

UDP smells political ploy

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Rejection of ILP demand by Central Govt

SHILLONG: The UDP has termed the rejection of the ILP demand in the State by the Congress-ruled Union Government as a ‘political ploy’.
“The Congress MLAs are under tremendous pressure since they are not able to justify the State Government’s decision to oppose the implementation of ILP. This is the only way out to save their face in the eyes of the public especially with the Lok Sabha and District Council elections round the corner,” UDP working president Bindo Mathew Lanong said on Friday while reacting to the comments of Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma on ILP.
He said that the stand of the Centre that ILP would not be applicable to Meghalaya was nothing but a game plan to save the Congress Government in the State from further embarrassment.
“The Congress MLAs would be hiding under this hidden game plan,” Lanong said.
The UDP working president also expressed surprise that the Centre has rejected the proposal to implement the ILP despite no such proposal being forwarded by the State Government.
He also alleged that the Centre was adopting different yardsticks in relation to the applicability of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873.
There is no justification in the Centre’s arguments that the law is not applicable in Meghalaya, when it is already in vogue in three states in the North Eastern region, Lanong stated.
“The provisions of the ILP are applicable to Meghalaya and also many of the areas under Assam,” Lanong added.
Meanwhile, Nongthymmai MDC Latiplang Kharkongor demanded the State Government to make public the letter of the Central Government rejecting the proposal to implement ILP in the State.
“If there is any such letter, the Government should make it public. But I have strong doubts if the Centre has really sent any such communiqué to the State Government,” Kharkongor said while addressing newsmen here on Friday.
“I am not convinced since the Joint Secretary of the Union Home Ministry Shambhu Singh is not the authority to comment on such important policy concerning the applicability of ILP in the State. If the statement had come from any senior Cabinet Minister in the Union Government then it would have carried some weight,” Kharkongor said.
He also stated that the Union Home Ministry cannot be the sole authority to decide on the applicability of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873 in Meghalaya since the views of the Ministry of Tribal Affairs are equally important as the issue concerns the people in the tribal areas.
Meanwhile, Kharkongor said that if the Centre cannot give ILP to the people of the State then it should again review the Instrument of Accession (IOA) by giving special status to the people of Meghalaya similar to that of Jammu & Kashmir.
“Article 370 of the Indian constitution has granted special autonomous status to Jammu & Kashmir. The people of Meghalaya should be given the same status,” the MDC said.

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