The All Tribal Students’ Union, Manipur (ATSUM) has demanded that the state government make an ‘alternative accommodation arrangements’ for the occupants of Tribal Colony before dismantling the existing structures/buildings.
The demand of the apex tribal student body of Manipur came after the state government had reportedly made a decision to construct a multi-storeyed building (G + 6) government residential quarters at Tribal Colony, New Checkon, in its cabinet meeting held on September 15, 2020.
In this regard, ATSUM recalled the reasons for the establishment of Tribal Colony. According to the student body, Tribal Colony located at New Checkon in Imphal East district, is a government quarter “exclusively constructed for the tribal government servants/employees in the year 1961 through a Government Order No. 141/13/60 – M dated December 8, 1960 of Revenue department under Manipur Gazette No. 94 dated December, 14,1960”. Since then, according to ATSUM, tribal government servants/employees mostly in the Grade-IV such as sweepers, chowkidars, clerks, police constables, riflemen, drivers etc were allotted the quarters of type- I (consisting 100 quarters), Type – II (Old and New), Type – III (Old and New) and Type – IV in Tribal Colony. ATSUM further said that this arrangement of providing shelters/quarters for tribal government servants/employees by the state government has boosted the morale/enthusiasm of the tribal populace of all hill districts of the state for serving the state government in their respective maximum capacity by stationing in the hearth of the state capital i.e. Imphal.
According to ATSUM, Tribal Colony is closely associated with the occupants (poor tribal government servants) since its inception that it has been a benefactor to many tribal government servants/employees of hill districts posted at various government departments in Imphal because maximum of the occupants are Grade – IV employees with marginal monthly salary which deter them to afford possessing their own residence or private rent house at imphal.
The student body added that the name Tribal Colony itself in the heart of city signifies or facilitates the integral unity of the state because much has been vocally advocated frequently on brotherhood of hills and valley.
“Therefore, it is pertinent to practically strengthen the much advocated vocal into reality by preserving the only tribal designated colony of Imphal by all and most importantly by the state government,” it added.
ATSUM further said that the decision of the state government for constructing a multi-storeyed building (G + 6) government residential quarters at Tribal Colony, New Checkon, in its cabinet meeting held on September 15, 2020 is well appreciated by all.
“As however, considering the initial holistic initiatives of the then state government for accommodating Tribal Colony exclusively for tribal government servants/employees vide Government Order No. 141/13/60 – M dated December 8, 1960 of revenue department under Manipur Gazette No. 94 dated December 14, 1960 and its subsequent benefits and close affinity inherited to tribal government servants/employees for the past 60 years, it is prudent that the state government arranges alternative accommodation arrangements for the occupants of Tribal Colony before dismantling the existing structures/buildings”.
ATSUM stressed that the legacy of Tribal Colony is maintained by the state government before and after the completion of the new constructions so as to avoid misunderstanding between various communities of the state.