Imphal, June 2 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi is yet to give an appointment to an all-party delegation from Manipur who want to raise the issue of three anti-migrant bills pending with the central government, Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh said on Thursday.
The three bills passed by the state assembly on August 31, 2015 are yet to be given assent in view of the strong objections by the tribals who maintain that these are “anti-tribal”. The legislations’ supporters say that there is nothing in them which are against any indigenous peoples.
“If there is anything against any community, the bills could be amended,” said the chief minister.
Asked about the inordinate delay in getting the appointment, which had been sought a long time ago, Ibobi Singh said: “The Prime Minister has to face many issues and problems for the whole country and not Manipur alone. It is possible that for the time being he has no time. Besides he will be going on a foreign tour. The delegates shall camp in Delhi and will meet with the Prime Minister and the Home Minister whenever appointments are given.”
The team was scheduled to leave Imphal on May 16 but the leaders perhaps decided to wait for the appointments, as the bills’ supporters have warned that if the team returns empty-handed, they will have to face the wrath of the people.
The chief minister further said: “During the North Eastern Council meeting at Shillong, I had conveyed to Modi the plan of the political parties to call on him.” However he did not divulge what reply the Prime Minister had given.
There is a strong campaign against the bills by the tribals, who are refusing to claim the bodies of nine activists, killed during agitations in Churachandpur district.
Though there have been various forms of agitations in support of the bills, indications are that the central government will not court trouble by giving assent readily.
Meanwhile, normal life in Manipur Valley has been thrown out of gear with agitations demanding enactment of the bills.