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State passed no law to nullify tribal customary rights: ZUF

The land of Zeliangrong since time immemorial has been preserved and owned by the community having their sovereign customary power and rights long before the creation of Manipur state, ZUF stated.

ByIFP Bureau

Updated 23 Jun 2022, 2:40 pm

(Representational Image: Unsplash)
(Representational Image: Unsplash)

The Zeliangrong United Front (ZUF) on Thursday claimed that there has been no Act or law passed by the state or the nation to nullify or supersede the customary rights of the tribal community.  

The land of Zeliangrong since time immemorial has been preserved and owned by the community having their sovereign customary power and rights long before the creation of Manipur state, ZUF stated in a release issued by its secretary, information and publicity John Pame.

“Our history of struggle against foreign occupation and that of colonial power were never for or in defence of Manipur state,” it stated.

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ZUF stated that it is irked by the appearance of the official paper ‘Tairengpokpi-Tamenglong Protected Forest’ Manipur Gazette, Extraordinary, published by authority on September 21, 1966 and the government of Manipur Secretariat, Forest Branch Notification, Imphal January 10 1966 in the print media.

The notification has directly ignored the rights of the traditional forest dwellers whose ancestry has endowed upon the generations, it stated.

It is solely the instinct of natural rights of the community to defend and protect their land which Haipou Jadonang, his contemporaries and Rani Gaidinliu fought for and not otherwise for Manipur, it added. 

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“Our struggle continues post India Independent up to this day with the age-old traditional rights to self-determination over our land and its resources,” it stated. Therefore, any attempt from any quarter to claim possession of our land and forest will be resisted and fought for," ZUF stated.

ZUF appealed to the state government to reconsider "the claim notification order" or any other Act or law passed by the state concerning the land of Zeliangrong "so as communal harmony and mutual respect and recognition of each other's rights prevail."

All the villages and authorities concerned are informed to cooperate and safeguard the common ancestral traditional tribal rights of the land, it added. 

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First published:23 Jun 2022, 2:40 pm

Tags:

ZUFzeliangrongtribal land rightstribal land act

IFP Bureau

IFP Bureau

IMPHAL, Manipur

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