Updated 19 Dec 2021, 5:06 am
The Scheduled Tribe Demand Committee of Manipur (STDCM) has called for an 18-hour total shutdown from December 28 midnight if the state government failed to send the requisite recommendations of enlisting Meitei/Meetei in the scheduled tribe list by then.
The STDCM stated in a release that its publicity secretary W Ananda Meitei said that the committee has been demanding to enlist Meitei/Meetei in scheduled tribe list since 2012. Various agitations were launched from time to time. But the demand is still not addressed despite the fact that the Central government had urged to submit the necessary recommendations, he stated.
It continued that the agitation was resumed from October 28 which halted for some months in view of COVI9-19 pandemic as the situation has calmed down to some extent. Since then sit-in protest and people’s conventions have been conducted from place to place.
On December 16, people’s convention held at Ima Khunthok Hanbi, Thangmeiband had resolved to call 18 hours' total shut own from mid-night of December 28 if the state government does not send required recommendation by 3 pm of December 27. The committee will intensify the agitation if this ultimatum is not served by conducting protest at market place, torch rally and picketing of state and central government offices, the release informed.
The committee stated that though Chief Minister N Biren Singh had admitted that their demand is legitimate, not a single step has been taken to translate their demand. Such irresponsible act of state government is very unfortunate, they added.
The community Meitei or Meetei fulfils all the criteria to be recognised as scheduled tribe and enjoy constitutional safeguard, the committee stated and urged the state government to act on their demand at the earliest.
First published:18 Dec 2021, 4:13 am