The Schedule Tribe Demand Committee (STDC), Manipur has expressed its opposition to the Centre's plan to carry out delimitation based on wrong census.
The committee also appealed to the state government to send necessary recommendations to the Centre so that Meitei/ Meetei can be enlisted under the Schedule Tribe status.
A release by STDCM publicity secretary Ananda Meetei stated that Meetei/ Meitei should be enlisted under ST so that the constituency occupied by Meetei/ Meitei remains protected under the reserved category and they are given the authority of self-governance under the Constitution.
In the 2001 census, the Registrar General of India and Census Commissioner of India published an estimated census on Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul subdivision, it said. After that, a census report was also already conducted in 2011 and it has flaws, the release stated. As such, STDC has felt the need to aware the rights of indigenous Meetei/ Meitei regarding delimitation, it added.
In India, delimitation is conducted once every 10 years under Article 82 and Article 170 though it may be postponed according to time and situation. Constitution (84th & 87th) Amendment, Act 2002 and 2003 mentioned that “the delimitation which will be conducted based on Delimitation Act 2002 will not affect the number of constituencies but to readjust/ rationalize them based on the census.
After the delimitation process of four northeastern states, including Manipur, was cancelled in 2008, there was no information that delimitation will be conducted till 2026, it stated. Instead the delimitation exercise was deferred in Manipur until further order, it stated.
The scheduled tribe and scheduled castes, the numbers of constituencies are re-fixed and reserved based on the number of population under Article 330 and 332, the release stated.
However, there is no provision to reserve the constituencies inhabited by the indigenous Meetei and Meitei who are not enlisted under ST, the release added.