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Tuesday, 09 June 2020 - Imphal Times

After 34 tested positive of Coronavirus, inmates from quarantine center at Moirang came out in protest of authorities’ negligence

IT News

Imphal, June 9

Inmates from quarantine center being opened at Diligent High School in Moirang Assembly Constituency today came out at the street and protest over government negligence in providing their food and others daily needs after 34 of them have been tested positive and taken to isolation ward at Bishnupur district head quarter.

A video footage uploaded at Facebook saw inmates coming out at the street and protesting government authority’s negligence.

“Since early morning no authority including the district administration authority had come to ask about our food, they didn’t even attend the inmates who are having some health problem”, a lady inmate was heard while sharing the video.

Earlier, an inmate from the same quarantine center, who has been tested positive with the Novel Coronavirus in a Facebook post, had indicated that he may have contracted the virus from inside the quarantine center. Imphal Times when contacted to him through mobile phone, it is learnt that even at isolation ward in Bishnupur district hospital, he along with other positive people were not properly provided medical treatment.

The person identified as Khangembam Arbinda , aged about 27 , son of Kh. Amu Singh of Kumbi leirak Achouba , Bishnupur district return back from Chennai and reached at Jiribam on May 23. He is a research fellow at Anna University Chennai. He came back as he is having heart problem and as he thought that it would be better to check up at Imphal’s hospital.

“As soon as we reached at Jiribam, 104 of us who came from other states of India were told to travel in 3 bus to Imphal, we were not allow to complain over it”, said Arbinda while talking to Imphal Times. He said that they were first kept at Utlou Public School and later shifted to Diligent School at Moirang. At the quarantine center when some inmate complaint about fever and cold, they were simply provided some paracetamol and no testing has been done, he said.

He expressed suspicions of getting infected at the quarantine center. 34 of them from among the 104 persons from the quarantine center have been tested positive late yesterday night.   

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CM inspects UNACCO School for opening of Covid care center and NSU complex at Haraothel

IT News
Imphal, June 9:

Chief Minister N. Biren Singh along with Health and Family Welfare Minister L. Jayantakumar and Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Letpao Haokip inspected the works going on at UNACCO School, Meitram in Imphal West District for opening of a COVID Care Center. The Chief Minister and the Ministers were briefed by the Chairman of the Governing Body of the school, N. Irabanta regarding different blocks and campus of the school.
N. Biren Singh said that that mischievous and undisciplined inmate of quarantine centers would now be jailed. Expressing serious concern that some inmates do not bother to maintain safety guidelines laid down by the Government at this time of crisis, he observed that it would be never possible to keep vigil on anybody round the clock. As such, the State Government has now kept aside a separate block in Central Jail, Sajiwa which can accommodate 90 inmates to jail the mischievous inmates.
The Chief Minister said that the COVID Care Center at UNACCO School would start functioning from tomorrow. The Center was earlier planned to have only 100 beds. However, it has now the scope of increasing the capacity to 300, he added.
As of now Churachandpur has the highest number of COVID-19 cases and containment zones, the Chief Minister informed and added that Bishnupur District Hospital has also started admitting COVID-19 patients apart from RIMS and JNIMS. The Chief Minister also inspected the progress of construction of permanent campus of the National Sports University at Haraothel / Koutruk today. The Chief Minister and the Minister were briefed by the officials of NBCC (India) Ltd., the work agency of the project.
N. Biren Singh said that the inspection came after he had a video conferencing with Union Youth Affairs and Sports Minister Kiren Rijiju on early completion of construction of the campus on Monday. The Chief Minister further said that it is a pet project of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi and also a dream university of the people of the North East and Manipur in particular.
The project was delayed due to a communication gap between the Centre and the State, N. Biren said. As the matter has been sorted out now, the project would see the light of day soon, the Chief Minister added. Now, the work agency has been changed and the project has been handed over to NBCC (India) Ltd. As such, the new agency has come up with new construction plans, drawing, blueprint, etc., he informed.
The Chief Minster further said that a Committee headed by the Chief Secretary, Manipur has been formed to oversee the work progress. Union Youth Affairs and Sports Secretary and Joint Secretary and Commissioner (YAS), Government of Manipur would be the members of the committee which would submit reports to the Chief Minister and Union Minister Kiren Rijiju on weekly basis. As such, the project would see visible changes soon, the Chief Minister said.
The proposal for the setting up of the National Sports University was announced in 2014.The foundation stone for the construction of the University was laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on March 16, 2018. Kiren Rijiju visited the campus site in September last year.

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AstraZeneca ties up with Pune based SII to produce potential vaccine

IT News
Pune, June 9:  

“AstraZeneca pic”, a British-Swedish, a multinational pharmaceutical company, has entered into an agreement with the Pune-based Serum Institute of India (SII), among other world-wide vaccine manufacturers, to produce the vaccine currently under trial at the University of Oxford on a mass scale, if successful.
The agreements, reached on a “not-for-profit basis” includes a $750 million agreement with the “Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness Innovations” founded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation(USA) and “Gavi”, the vaccine alliance”, headquartered at Geneva, Switzerland, to support the manufacturing, procurement and distribution of 300 million doses of the vaccine, with delivery starting by the end of the year.
“AstraZeneca” has agreed to supply 400 million doses to the US and UK after reaching a licence agreement with Oxford for its recombinant adenovirus vaccine. “AstraZeneca” is building a number of supply chains in parallel across the world to support global access at no profit during the pandemic and has so far secured manufacturing capacity for two billion doses of the vaccine.
Adar Poonawalla, SII’s chief executive officer, said: “Serum Institute of India is delighted to partner with “AstraZeneca” in bringing this vaccine to India as well as low-and-middle-income countries”. “Over the past 50 years SII has built significant capability in vaccine manufacturing and supply globally. We will work closely with “AstraZeneca” to ensure fair and equitable distribution of the vaccine in these countries,” he added.
“Our vaccine work is progressing quickly”, the university said on Friday. It recently announced the start of a Phase II/III trial of the vaccine in about 10,000 adult volunteers with other late-stage trials due to begin in a number of countries around the world. In addition, the university and industry partnership reached a licensing agreement with SII to supply one billion doses for low-and-middle-income countries, with a commitment to provide 400 million before the end of 2020, the university added.

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26 test positive in a housing society of IAS officers

By our Correspondent
Mumbai, June 9:

Nearly 26 persons who either reside or work in “Yashodhan”, located at Churchgate in South Mumbai, a home to senior bureaucrats, have tested positives for COVID-19 disturbing bureaucracy in Maharashtra.
The infected persons include a woman IAS officer, a principal secretary in charge of migrant transportation, her IPS officer husband and their two daughters. They are being treated in Breach Candy Hospital in South Mumbai. Three others who tested positive are car drivers of some other bureaucrats, two are officials from the public works department, while the rest are employed as helpers and domestic helps in the building.
Eight of the 26 were actually staying in the building, while the remaining would come from outside. According to BMC officials, the index case or the point of contact from where the infection spread in the latest instance are two domestic helps who tested positive eight days ago. Now 16 of the infected persons have been shifted to a Covid care centre near CST station.  Most of them are asymptomatic and stable, Additional Municipal Commissioner Suresh Kakani said and added that floors where people have tested positive will be sealed. Officials whose house domestic helps have tested positive will be tested after five days. If they test negative, they will be advised home quarantine for some more days.
“Yashodhan” is one of the most sought-after government quarters in Mumbai. It is considered prestigious to get a home allotted there. The building has 2- and 3BHK flats; even officers of the rank of additional chief secretary stay here.
Situated on Dinsha Vachcha Road, the government-owned high-rise houses 42 senior officials. They include Home secretary Sanjay Kumar; Health Secretary Dr Pradeep Vyas; Medical Education Secretary Dr Sanjay Mukherjee, Additional Chief Secretary to the Chief Minister Ashish Kumar Singh, his wife Valsa Nair-Singh(who is the state Aviation Secretary), Principal Secretary Bhushan Gagrani, Women and Child Development Secretary Idzes Kundan( her IPS husband Niket Kaushik) and State Intelligence Department Commissioner Rashmi Shukla among others.
One floor of the building was sealed on 20 May, by the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) when two IAS officers tested positive. Many officers playing active role in the campaign against coronavirus are residing in this building.
When it was noticed that two IAS officers tested positive because of their domestic servants, nearly 150 persons were made to undergo the COVID-19 test. Those tested included top officers and subordinate staff. The 26 persons include cooks, drivers and domestic helps, working for these officers. This development comes as a severe blow to the Maharashtra Government which has began mission “unlock 01” to bring the state on normal tracks, after prolonged lock down. Elsewhere in the country the incidents of IAS officers infected by COVID-19 have been reported from Bihar and Madhya Pradesh.
Besides these IAS officers, police personnel constitute the highest number of COVID-19 fatalities and in Maharashtra at least 33 Maharashtra Police personnel, including an officer, have died of COVID-19.  Those who succumbed in the state, include 18 of the Mumbai Police force.
As many as 2,562 police personnel have till now tested positive for the deadly disease in the state. The figures include 1497 active cases ( including 196 officers).  ”Police personnel posted for nakabandi duty, at quarantine and isolation facilities for the last three months have found to be infected, the Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said.

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JFA condoles death of scribe in Covid-19

By our correspondent
Guwahati, June 9:
 
Journalists’ Forum Assam (JFA) expresses grief at the demise of Manoj Kumar with Covid-19 complications in Hyderabad. Manoj, 35, was working for a popular Telugu news channel and becomes the first journalist victim of novel corona virus infections in Telangana.
“Manoj is the third Indian media martyr in the fight against corona outbreak. Earlier Agra based journalist Pankaj Kulashrestha and Kolkata based photojournalist Ronny Roy succumbed to Covid-19 infections,” said a statement issued by JFA president Rupam Barua and secretary Nava Thakuria.
Telangana scribe Manoj was admitted in the hospital on 4 June with ailments and he was tested positive for Covid-19. The central Indian province had already a dozen of journalists infected with the virus, where many of them were asymptomatic. Manoj died on Sunday night in the hospital.
JFA, while urging Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao to compensate the family of bereaved scribe adequately, has appealed to the Union government in New Delhi for immediately announcing life insurance coverage of Rs 50 lakh to each working journalist in the country.

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Are quarantine centers in Manipur hotspot for COVID-19 pandamic ?

The government of Manipur says that there is no local transmission of the novel coronavirus and all those detected with the virus are from among those who have return back to the state. As per the a statement by the Chief Minister of Manipur, as many as thirty eight thousand people have return back from outside the state so far. Among them total number of people tested is over seventeen thousand as per record available from both RIMS and JNIMS, where the testing is done. And among these seventeen thousand plus people 282 people have been tested positive. 64 people have  recovered so far and the number of active case as per statement by the state Heath department at 11 am today is 218. May be the assumption about ‘no local transmission’ in the state of Manipur is true as there are no evidences of lateral transmission of the virus untill a nurse from Churachandpur district, with no travel history has been tested positive on June 4. However, when one  take a look to the statistics of the people detected with the virus, there are reason to believe that the virus may have been transmitting from the infected carriers to those who ate not infected but staying together at the same quarantine.
On May 29 issue of this newspaper, we have quoted Khurai Assembly Constituency MLA L. Sushindro at which he drew the attention of the state health department and the district administration to the need for change of the quarantine system in the state. This newspaper had reported the MLA regretting on learning a girl from Churachandpur getting infected most probably from the quarantine center that she stayed at Churachandpur.
Day before yesterday, inmates staying at quarantine center opened at Waikhom Mani Girls’ College in Thoubal breaking the gate of the college forcing the district administration to sent them back to their homes. Imphal Times had also reported about the grievances of the inmates staying at Little Flower School quarantine center some days back. Those staying at the center felt insecured as chances of getting infected with the virus was high as no proper maintenance for physical distancing among the inmates were taken up.  And day before yesterday there are report about keeping over 60 people in a single room for quarantine at Kangpokpi.
Yesterday, 36 people from the same quarantine home at Moirang have been tested positive. As per source there are 104 people staying in the quarantine center. Most of them arrived in the state from Chennai and others states of India on May 23. That means they were in the quarantine center for 17 days. May be their samples were collected on day -14 or before but their result were provided on the 17th day only. Generally as per the SOPs of the Manipur government person who showed no symptoms after 14 days can be sent back to their respective home for self quarantine . However due to pressure from sections of people the government  make test mandatory for all people in the quarantine even as the authority fails to test all the people in quarantine on time.
Given the fact that there are no proper toilets, rooms or timely testing facilities, it is possible that the virus did spread from those infected to those who are not infected at quarantine centers.
Doesn’t that talk volumes on the way that the authority are running these quarantine centers?

Manipur’s Draft Bamboo Policy: Timeliness Cluttered By Casualness

By -  Prof. Amar Yumnam

The Manipur Government has recently come out with Draft on Manipur Bamboo Policy. I was very happy to learn of this for various reasons; let me spell out some of the reasons to begin with. First, the ongoing COVID-19 crises are testing the resilience of governments worldwide, and Manipur is no exception to this. However, to hear of a Draft Policy Paper on Bamboo in the midst of this crisis is absolutely heartening. Second, Bamboo constitutes a key component of the socio-cultural and economic life of the land and people of Manipur. Third, Manipur has been looking for a policy on Bamboo very seriously at least since the early 1990s. Fourth, in recent years the multidimensional significance of Bamboo as an input for various products is being increasingly explored, particularly in the Southeast and East Asia. Fifth, Bamboo has been proven as an important input which meets the requirements of environmental sustainability, principles of hygiene, norms of healthiness, and convergence with the livelihood enhancement properties particularly of the lower strata rural populace while converting into end-products. Sixth, the Post COVID-19 world would certainly be not the economy where agglomeration holds the key for (economies of scale) taking the industrialization forward. This is where the critical significance of Bamboo as an Industrial input arises. For all these reasons inter alia I personally felt very excited to hear of a Draft Policy Paper on Bamboo in Manipur.
It was with this mental frame that I read the thirteen pages of the Draft Manipur Bamboo Policy with hope and expectations and full concentration at one go. Without mincing words, I must admit that I find the document as a very disappointing application of mind. Let me put here a few instances as to how do I say so:
A.    In the very first para of the Preamble we find “The myriad uses...has [sic!]; first instance of carelessness in language;
B.    The last para in the Preamble reads thus: “A planned, scientific and holistic approach to cultivation and management of bamboo on a sustainable basis can be an inexhaustible source of goods and services which will contribute significantly towards the socio-economic development of the State and the region as a whole.” This is a very complex sentence implying strategy and objectives with none defined properly.
C.    When it comes to Vision, the Document states: “The policy seeks to harness the economic, social and environmental potential of the Bamboo resources of Manipur. It seeks to develop the economy of the State and provide employment and income generating activities to the farmers, rural poor and unemployed youths of the State. A market led, community owned sustainable development model for bamboo shall lead to an increase in quantity and quality of bamboo resources and enterprises to meet the current and future requirements of not just the State and Country but also the larger international market.” One cannot make out whether this is a Vision Statement or a Statement on Strategy.
D.   In more than one place, the Document mentions “bamboo based industries” implying the poverty of understanding of the very concept of industry.
E.    In the many sections on Resource and talking about strategies, in one it is stated that “Bamboo cultivation to synchronise with existing farming practices such as jhumming, etc. to maximise interim benefits”. What does this mean other than giving official approval to shifting cultivation?
F.    An instance of being very simplistic in a policy document: In order to fight bamboo-flowering by mitigating the adverse effects: “Give monetary incentives for collection of bamboo seeds.”

Having spelled out as to how the Draft Manipur Bamboo Policy is such a big disappointment let me also spell out as to how a Policy Paper should be like.
1.    A Policy Paper is a paper with a huge instrumental value to evolve into institutional norms for future functioning of governance, evolution of policy agenda and the relationship between state and the people; it goes much beyond a write-up of a few pages by putting together some sentences relating to the subject. A Policy paper is always and necessarily has to be a coherent exposition of the ideas of the government manifesting a matured exercise of mind and knowledge.
2.    A policy paper must also identify the “what is possible” and the “what is imperative.” In the case of Bamboo in Manipur, the paper must have a clear exposition of the state’s perception of the scenario of the bamboo sector, and how strategies are being devised for addressing the weaknesses and enhancing the strengths. This is where the linkages with the Scientific World and framework for R and D would be defined. This is also where the comparative route map vis-à-vis the rest of the would also be articulated.  
3.    The biggest drawback of any framework for development and industrial sector has been the tendency to become hierarchical in functioning rather than fostering an atmosphere for collaborative functioning. The way the Draft Policy talks of so many Committees, and the nature of the composition of the Committees indicate that the objective of the Draft Policy paper is rather creation of a hierarchical structure (the world knows the weaknesses of this) than a vibrant bamboo economy.  
An absolute confusion as reflected in the Vision statement – “ A market led, community owned sustainable development model for bamboo shall lead to an increase in quantity and quality of bamboo resources and enterprises” – wherein market led and community owned are just mixed up for the sheer appeal to the reader rather than substance can never be the foundation of a Policy Paper.

Fourth delimitation in Manipur: An impact analysis

By Prof. R.K. Narendra Singh

Decision rooted false documents ended everything.

People never realize significance of decision until it turns erroneous.

 

Abstract

Delimitation exercise is a mandatory for representative democracy making territorial grouping of proportionate peoples by fixings or boundaries of territorial constituencies in a country or a province having a legislative body. Since in 1952, 1963 and 1973, the delimitations of the entire country conducted under the relevant Delimitation Commission Acts based on respective immediate preceding census’s figures. Thereafter such regular exercise deferred supposed to base on the following two decadal censuses but the fourth one had on the row in 2002, except in four northeastern states i.e., Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh, based on Census 2001. The main reason of deferred of delimitation was disproportionate population sizes hovered over the states of India that was mainly due to indifference of Family Planning Programs (FPF) performance within and between States and Union teritories. If delimitation exercise were performed based on Census 1981 and 1991, the outcomes might be creating havoc among the states especially between South and North blocks as the former might had loss their seats in the Parliament due to decreasing  population as adopting FPP effectively while antagonistically the latter gain the seats due to high fertility during the decades. The decision of differed is fully justified that uphold the objective of delimitation of constituencies i.e., proportionate political representation of region, caste, minority, etc., in policymaking bodies. The reason for left out of four North Eastern states in fourth Delimitation of India was the security issues, as Central Government gave reason for; the another undisclosed one was the Foreigner Issues in Assam (1979-1985) due to influx of illegal migrants. If it has had happen, Assam might have largely lost its political representation of sons of the soil. In particular, in Manipur there was a public hue and cry against unreliability of Census 2001figure as nine sub-divisions of the three hill districts had far beyond natural population growth. And eventually the matter was also heard in the Courts of Law. Finally, the Census Authority of India adjusted only the controversial population figures of the three sub-divisions of Senapati district in their final Census Report 2001. Indeed, there is no chance of classifying the adjusted figures in terms of census parameters considered like age, caste, religion, village, fertility, mortality, migration, etc., and thus in their final Census Report 2001 of Manipur published after excluding the population of the controversial three sub-divisions – Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul – of Senapati district. It is very much loud and clear that the Census 2001 figure of Manipur is not the exact one, something manipulated in compromised comportment. However, these smokes of havoc in the mind of public were subsided as Central Government deferred the exercise in four North-Eastern states by Notification bearing S.O.283 (E) dated, 8th February 2008 deferring the process of delimitation for the four North-eastern states. Secondly, as the 84th Amendment Act of 2001 have froze the total number of seats in Look Sabah and State Assemblies with the result the fourth Delimitation Commission could not increase in Lok Sabha’s and State Assemblies in proportionate to the population increase as per Census 2001 published. The frozen of seats would remain until 2026. Then the public outburst of hue and cry turns into melody song for the last 18 years since the 84th Amendment Act made in 2002. Now the same story is replay as the Government has cancelled its earlier Notification (S.O. 283 (E) dated, 8th February 2008) which has deferred delimitation by an Order No. 903 (E) dated 28th February 2020. Moreover, the Government constituted the Delimitation Commission for delimitation of Assembly and Parliamentary constituencies in the Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland under section 3 of the Delimitation Act, 2002. The Commission will delimit the constituencies of Jammu and Kashmir in accordance with the provisions of the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act, base on Census 2011(latest one) instead of 2001 and of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur and Nagaland in accordance with the provisions of the Delimitation Act, 2002. Under the Delimitation Act, 2002, the commission would make only to readjust the division of each state and union territory into territorial constituencies for the purpose of Lok Sabha and State Assembly elections base on Census figures of 2001(old one). Now the question arises whether the forthcoming delimitation exercise in Manipur would give proportionate political representation especially in State Legislative Assembly, as the Census 2001 figure of Manipur is counterfeit as well as excluded population of three sub-divisions in the final total population of Census 2001 (a details, specially caste, is necessitated while entitlement calculation for assembly seats). The crux of the matter call for the present article is to analyze the impact of delimitation in Manipur under the Delimitation Act, 2002 demographically. It shows that through the forthcoming delimitation, four unreserved (UR) entitlement assembly seats go to reserved seats of schedule tribe (ST); and the existing three valley seats would be added to their counterpart hill districts. Besides, the finding suggests that the proposed exercise base on Census 2001is inconsistent and unjustified technically. Secondly, the Delimitation Commission of India is a high power and independent body and therefore constitutionally whatsoever their Orders after completion of the process cannot be challenged even to the Courts of Law and therefore only option left is to make delimitation defer until a fresh and reliable census enumeration take place, likely to be based on Census 2031 figures.  

Key Words:  Delimitation Commission of India; Census 2001; Parliament & Assembly seats

Introduction:

Delimitation simply meansto sketching out, drawing or tracing  the boundaries of the various Lok Sabha and assembly constituencies with the main objective of making the proportionate political representation in policy making bodies like in the Parliament and in the concerned State Legislative Assemblies and eventually formulates equal population representation from every seat. The process of  delimitation is performed by the Delimitation Commission or the Boundary Commission of India which is a commission established by the Government of India under the provisions of the Delimitation Commission Act. The Commission of India is a high power and independent body whose orders cannot be challenged even to the Courts of law. These orders come into force on a date to be specified by the President of India. The copies of its orders would be laid before the House of the People and the State Legislative Assembly concerned, but no modifications are permissible.

In the past, there were four Delimitation Commissions in the country viz., in 1952 under the Delimitation Commission Act, 1952, in 1963 under Delimitation Commission Act, 1962, in 1973 under Delimitation Act, 1972 and in 2002 under Delimitation Act, 2002. However, in 1976 the Central Government had deferred delimitation process until after the 2001Census so that states' family planning programs would not affect their political representation in the Lok Sabha. During the Emergency, through 42nd Amendment to Indian Constitution the government froze the total Parliamentary and Assembly seats in each state until 2001 Census. Due to the imbalanced performance of family planning programs during and after the Emergency over the states, it might led to large discrepancies in the size of constituencies, with the largest having over three million electors, and the smallest less than 50,000. For instance, the states which had implemented family planning widely like KeralaTamil Nadu and Punjab would stand to lose many parliamentary seats representation while states with poor family planning programs and higher fertility rates like Uttar PradeshBihar and Rajasthan would unfavorably gain many of the seats transferred from better performing states.

The present delimitation of parliamentary constituencies has been done based on Census 2001figures under the provisions of Delimitation Act, 2002. However, the Constitution of India was specifically amended as 84th Amendment in 2002 not to have delimitation of constituencies until the first census after 2026. Thus, the present constituencies carved out on the basis of 2001 census shall continue to be in operation till the first census after 2026 and therefore total number of seats in each state is froze till 2026.

After 2002 Delimitation exercise, the Central government might expect that uniform population growth rate would be achieved throughout the country by the year 2026 and such exercise were deferred until 2026. Therefore, the fifth would be conducted after Census 2031. In the meantime, in the forthcoming election for newly formed Union territory of Jammu and Kashmir, their delimitation process is constitutionally badly needed in one hand and on the other, the left out of four North Eastern states i.e., Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh would also be simultaneously conducted their delimitation in the fourth delimitation. However, the former would be conducted under the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganization Act, base on Census 2011 and the latter under the provisions of the Delimitation Act, 2002 base on Census 2001 figure.

The main objective of delimitation is to make the proportionate political representation in policymaking bodies in Parliament and in State Legislative Assembly. Whatsoever the reasons might be it should not hamper representative democracy which is the motto of delimitation of constituencies by the Delimitation Commission of India. If there is any discrepancy in the part of the process, it violates the sanity of representative democracy. There are two components to be taken care off while doing exercises. They are Census data on which entire process base upon, and sincerity and honesty in the part of Commission to drawing or tracing  the boundaries of the constituencies. Indeed the delimitation exercise for Assam, Manipur, Arunachal and Nagaland would be based on Census 2001 data as it follows the provisions of Delimitation Act, 2002. However, the Census 2001 data of Manipur for some of the sub-divisions of the districts of the state were quite distorted and their figures were finally adjusted in final report. Thus the proposed delimitation exercised base on Census 2001 for Manipur is unjustified and consequence upon it is suggested that such exercise would be defer till 2026 as 84thAmendment to Indian Constitution in 2002 states that  not to have delimitation in the country till the first census after 2026.

The Indian Parliament has two Houses viz., the Lower House known as Look Sabah (House of the People) and Upper House, Raja Sabah.  Look Sabah has sanctioned member strength of 543 those are directly elected by citizens of India across the country. Since inception, 2 additional members of the Anglo-Indian community were also nominated by the President of India on the advice of Government of India, which was abolished in January 2020 by the 104th Constitutional Amendment Act, 2019. The maximum strength of the Look Sabah  would be 552 members while the Raja Sabha can have a maximum of 250 members. At present Lok Sabha has a sanctioned strength of 245 members, of which 233 are elected from States and Union Territories and 12 are nominated by the President. The number of members from a state depends on its population.

      Presently Manipur has two members in the Lok Sabha  out of which one is reserved for ST (outer parliamentary constituency) and another unreserved (inner parliamentary constituency and another lone member in Rajya Sabha in the Parliament.

 

Results and observations:

 

      In order to study the pros and cons of the 4th Delimitation being initiated in Manipur needs a detail appraisal on the population profile of the state. In this regards, a brief district-wise population profile of Manipur for the Census years 1991 and 2001 including adjusted population of Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul is set forth in table-1.

 

Table-1

District-wise population with decadal % growth rate

District

Population  (1991)

Population  (2001)

Decadal variation

Decadal % growth rate

Imphal East

330,460

394,876

64,416

19.49

Imphal West

380,801

444,382

63,581

16.70

Bishnupur

180,773

208,368

27,595

15.27

Thoubal

293,958

364,140

70,182

23.87

Total

1,185,992

1,411,766

225,774

19.03

Senapati

208,406

283,621*

75,215

36.09

Tamenglong

86,278

111,499

25,221

29.23

Churachandpur

176,184

227,905

51,721

29.36

Chandel

71,014

118,327

47,313

15.27

Ukhrul

109,275

140,778

31,503

28.83

Total

651,157

882,130

230,973

35.47

Grand total

1,837,149

2,293,896

456,747

24.86

* including controversial adjusted population of Mao-Maram, Paomata & Purul (127,108).

           

            The decadal growth rate (%) of the Manipur state for 1991-2001 is 24.86% which is quite higher than the national figure of 21.54%. The rate for valley districts is just 19.03 as against 35.47 of hill districts and the variation is quite significant. Thus, it could be concluded that the population growth of hill is much higher than that of valley. Within the valley districts there is significant variation observed with highest pertained to Thoubal district (23.87%) and lowest to Bishnupur  district (15.27) while a significant is witnessed within the hill district as Chandel district retained the lowest (15.27%) and Senapati district, the highest (36.09%).

 

Table-2

9 Sub-divisions with abnormal decadal % growth rate

based on Provisional Population, 2001

District

Sub-division

Population  (1991)

Population

(2001)

Decadal % growth rate

based on

Provisional

 

Final

 

Prov. figure

Final

Figure

Senapati

Mao-Maram

49,676

120,774

69,131

143.12

39.16

Paomata

19,448

43,299

27,065

122.63

39.16

Purul

22,213

59,705

30,912

168.78

39.16

Saitu Gamphzol

28,327

43,612

No change

53.95

53.95

Chandel

Chakpikarong

21,582

46,998

No change

117.76

117.76

Moreh

20,085

32,513

No change

61.87

61.87

Machi

10,803

17,076

No change

58.06

58.06

Chandel HQ

18,544

26,127

No change

40.89

40.89

Ukhrul

Kasom Khullen

6,341

10,426

No change

64.42

64.42

Total

197,019

400,530

303,860

103.29

54.22

 

            There are nine sub-divisions four each in Senapati and Chandel districts and a lone in Uhkrul district of Manipur that these populations in 2001 Census were unacceptably high and therefore it becomes the matter of fascinating debate academically. The overall decadal growth rate for those nine sub-divisions at 2001 based on Census provisional figure found 103.29%, which is an absurd figures (abnormally high), out of which Purul has as high as 168.78% and Chandel HQ, as low as 40.89%. It is worthwhile to mention that no country in the world whose decadal growth rate is above 100% and Syria is the exceptional lone country having a little above 70 % and all others below 40%. However, the four sub-divisions – Purul, Mao-Maram, Paomata and Chakpikarong – have contentedly higher than 100%, and even the lowest among them i.e., Chandel HQ has above 40%. How these have had happen, no appropriate answer is pronounced by any authority till date.

 In fact, a high population growth of a society or community has always attributing some demographic components like exceptional high fertility, low mortality, high influx, low educational level, low standard of living, so and so forth. Without these abnormal demographic behaviors, the population alone cannot go up on its own, and in other words, the population is the outcome of these components. However, in case of erstwhile subdivisions, nothing abnormal demographic components were noticed; and the patters were more or less similar to other sub-divisions of the state then how was it happen? Whether was it a natural growth or exaggerated one made with vested interest? It might be being answered only through thorough technical analysis as it is an academic issue.

Finally, the Census Authority of India adjusted the figures of only three selective sub-divisions of Senapati district viz., Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul out of the 9-controversal sub-divisions without proper recounting in its final Census Report 2001. It was just an eyewash. Interestingly, a figure of 96,670 was subtracted from the total population of 223,778 (provisional) and making final population (127,108) of the three, which sarcastically entailed the three sub-divisions have same decadal growth rate of 39.16% each.It established the fact that the final Census report of the three sub-divisions of Senapati district is not the exact population figures, rather highly negotiated and manipulated ones.  Secondly, several series of final Census report of India 2001 of Manipur state excluded the population of the controversial three sub-divisions viz., Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul of Senapati district. It is because of the fact that the adjusted figures could not be classified according to the census parameters considered like age, caste, religion, fertility, mortality, etc. Henceforth, the population of Manipur state reflected in Census 2001 is not the true population figure of the state. Further, while calculating entitlement of seats for the House of the people (Parliament) and the State Legislative Assembly, caste-wise population is one of the essential ingredients. Therefore, the delimitation exercises on the basis of false population figures and on the estimated caste-wise figures might certainly be violating the main objective of the Delimitation Commission of India that it maintains people proportionate political representation in policy making bodies like in the House of the people (Parliament) and in the State Legislative Assembly.

 

            Table-2 deals with existing entitlement of seats for parliament and state assembly of Manipur since 1952. The maximum strength of the members in the Lok Sabha in the India Parliament would be 552 but at present strength are 543 members only. If the Delimitation Commission for the  forthcoming delimitation in Manipur allowed to increase one seat (make 3) then it is likely to give the democratic rights to the voters of eight Assembly segments (seven in Thoubal district and one in Jiribam district) who have been being denied the right to contest the Parliamentary elections. For this, first the Delimitation Act, 2002 needs to be amended which is next to impractical. On the other side of the coin, if the Delimitation Commission has followed strictly the provisions of the Delimitation Act, 2002, there is no chance of increase in Lok Sabha seat as it implies only readjust the division into territorial constituencies for Lok Sabha and State Assembly.

 

Table-3

Existing entitlement of seats

in the House of the people (Parliament) & Assembly

 

Year

 

Status

 

Parliament

Assembly

 

Total no. of seat

Unreserved

(inner)

Reserved (ST) (outer)

Total no. of seat

Unreserved (UR)

Reserved

 

SC

ST

 

 

 

 

1952

UT

2

1

1

-

-

-

-

 

1962

UT

2

1

1

-

-

-

-

 

1967

UT

2

1

1

30

21

-

9

 

1972

State

2

1

1

60

40

1

19

 

2002

State

2

1

1

60

40

1

19

 

 

Based on the 4th Delimitation Commission’s Guidelines and Methodology the followings are theprobable entitlement seats for Manipur State Assembly.

            First, the entire Manipur State is divided into theentitlement seats i.e., 60 for Assembly and 2 for House of the People. Then the number is assigned for Unreserved and Reverse including SC and ST according to their population. Further, allocation of number of constituencies to each district is to be made based on the total population of the district divided by the average population per constituency and it comes 38,232 approximately per assembly constituency.

 

Table-4

Caste-wise probable entitlement assembly seats

through delimitation, 2020

Caste

Population  (2001)

Population composition (%)

Entitlement assembly seats

Fractions

Round off to

Un Reserved

1,365,610

59.53

35.71

36 (40)

ST

741,141+127,108*=868,249

37.85

22.71

23 (19)

SC

60,037

2.61

1.57

1(1)

Total

2,293,896

100

60

60 (60)

* Controversial adjusted population of Mao-Maram, Paomata & Purul.

ǂ Figure within parenthesis indicates existing entitlement of seats.

 

            Caste-wise distribution of probable entitlement assembly seats is calculated based on their population (shown in table-4). Exact figure of ST population of Manipur in 2001 is not available as Census final population total of Manipur classifying in terms of caste excluded population of Mao-Maram, Paomata and Purul. However the population of Sanapati district including and excluding the three sub-divisions are 2,293,896 and 2,166,788 respectively and the discrepancy figure is certainly the population of the three sub-divisions i.e., 127,108. Again on the assumption that all the population in the three sub-divisions are ST, the caste-wise probable entitlement assembly seats is estimated, shown in table-4.

 

            The UR/ General including all castes other than ST an SC has highest population composition (59.53%), followed by ST (37.85%) and lowest pertains to SC with a percentage of 2.61. The whole population is proportionately distributed into 60 assembly seats in terms of caste. It is observed that  from the 3rd Delimitation  (based on  Census1971) to the proposed 4th Delimitation (base on  Census 2001), UR might be losing 4 seats, the same adding to ST while SC maintains the same existing entitlement seat that is one seat. The distribution is made in terms of district-wise, three valley seats go to its counterpart hill districts.

 

            It may be mentioned that Imphal West district includes a lone SC seat and a lone of UR pertains to Senapati district. Through the forthcoming Delimitation, theentitlement assembly seats for three-valley districts viz., Imphal East, Imphal West, Bishnupur districts may reduce by one seat each from the existing seats. For instance, Imphal East may reduce from 11 to 10; Imphal West from 12 to 11; Bishnupur from 6 to 5 and lone Thoubal district manage to maintain status quo as 10 seat. On contrary, one seat is added to Senapati district making 7 from the existing 6 (including 1 UR); one seat each goes to Chandel and Ukhrul enhancing to 3 from 2 and to 4 from 3 respectively.

 

 

Table-5

District-wise probable entitlement assembly seats

through delimitation, 2020

District

Population  (2001)

Existing entitlement seats

Probable entitlement seat

Remark

Imphal East

394,876

 11 

 10

-1

Imphal West

444,382

 12+1 (SC)

 

11+1(SC)

-1

Bishnupur

208,368

6

5

-1

Thoubal

364,140

 10 

10

-

Total

1,411,766

 40

37

-3

Senapati

283,621

 5+1 (UR) 

7

+1

Tamenglong

111,499

 3 

3

-

Churachandpur

227,905

 6 

 6

-

Chandel

118,327

 2

3

+1

Ukhrul

140,778

 3 

4

+1

Total

882,130

 20 

23

+3

- Indicates lose; + Indicates gain

 

Discussion: 

 

To delimit the constituencies of the House of the People and Manipur State Legislative Assembly by the Delimitation Commission constituted by the Government of India is constitutional procedure, nobody can deny. However, the delimitation exercise would not violet the sanity of the core objectives of the delimitation so as making the proportionate political representation of the people. For that, time and again the process is based on the most recent Census figure (just preceding Census prior to delimitation) so as it might depict a very recent, correct and clean population figure. If such exercise performs base on old Census data (not representing present population) and/or incorrect Census data (representing warp population), the outcome of the Commission could not ascertain an equal number of divisions of the real people in the Parliament and Assembly. Besides, the process stands contrary to the very idea behind conducting delimitation on the most recent and accurate Census data. Therefore, not only the whole exercises goes in vein but also it is another form of injustice against the spirit of representative democracy. The present argument is in agreement with the argument of the case against the impugned Order No. 903 (E) dated 28th February 2020 for delimitation in Assam in the Supreme Court bearing W.P. (C) No. 454 of 2020; and the case is already admitted by the Apex Court.

Manipur is not exception about the story of Census 2001. It is too old to represent a real scenario of the present population. Secondly, about the inconsistent data, in conjunction with the public outcry, the matter ran pillar to post and finally knocked to legal doors. It may be recalled that on Jan. 19, 2007 in connection with W. P. (PIL) No. 16 of 2005, the Gauhati High Court, Imphal Bench made with the following judgments:

“The respondents (authorities) are hereby directed to re-count the heads of the population in the 9 hill sub-divisions of the hill districts of Senapati, Ukhrul and Chandel of the State of Manipur for publishing another Census Report of India 2001 in respect of the said 9 hill sub-divisions and the present final Census Reoprt of India 2001 for the said 9 hill sub-divisions of the 3 hill districts of Senapati, Ukhrul and Chandel shall not be taken as the Census Report of India 2001 for re-adjustment of number of seats and delimitation of constituencies of the State of Manipur under Sections 8 and 9 of the Delimitation Act 2002 by the Delimitation Commission”.

            The judgment was challenged before the Supreme Court (SC) in SLP (C) No. 11813 of 2007 and during the pendency the Notification bearing S.O. 283 (E) dated, 8th February 2008 came to defer the process of delimitation for the four North-Eastern states. After series of legal battles, all related cases were dismissed and disposed by the Apex Court on 21st August 2014 upholding the earlier Order dated, 8th February 2008.

There is a significant variation of fertility levels among ethnic groups of people: one community has average of around one child per couple or hardly two while other enjoying on an average of more than 5 children per couple. Thus, any delimitation or re-adjustmentof number of seats of constituencies takes place in such situation it would deny right of the community who prefer small family norm that the Government of India encourages to achieved Millennium Development Goals. If it happens to continue there will be a fertility race among the communities. Keeping these in view, the Government of India had differed 4th Delimitation for a period of two decades (1981-1991) till 2001 which was supposed to be held twice just after the publications of Census 1981 and 1991. If it were happen timely, most of the parliamentary seats of states like KeralaTamil Nadu and Punjab would gone to UP, Bihar and Rajasthan since the former block has low fertility whilst very high fertility pertained to latter block. Still the fertility pattern is not uniform over the States and UTs of the country and therefore another amendment i.e., 84th Amendment froze the total number of seats in Lok Sabha and State Assemblies. It would continue to freezing of seats till 2026. The reason behind is that as the sustainable population policy has been being implemented by the Government then it is expected that uniform population growth rate would be achieved throughout the country by the year 2026.  On this line the forthcoming delimitation and re-adjustmentof number of seats of constituencies in Manipur should also be deferred till 2026.

Since the Foreigners’ Permit System was abolished in the state on November 18, 1950, it lifted all the barricades to immigrants and in-migrants. In 1980s the contentious Anti Foreigners issue was erupted and consequence upon a 16 clauses draft agreement was signed on August 5, 1980 but the Government never implemented the agreement such as detection and deportation of foreigners. Again, in 1994s, same agitation was erupted then at last, the second memorandum of agreement was made on November 9, 1994. Still government never full filled its promise in letter and spirit in spite of public uproar. One of the article entitled “Impact of NRC Updation (Assam) on Manipur: A dynamics of migration” which was published in Kangla Lanpung 2018; XII(I) have cited that the number of migrants who already entered in the state since 1951 to 2001 was 785,376. It was estimated under certain assumption that the growth rate of Manipur has followed the growth rate of gold standard (world). The figure was 398,199 when the growth rate of Manipur has followed the national growth rate (India). Whatsoever and whosoever the figure may be, huge number of migrants were included in the Census 2001 is quite loud and clear. Without eliminating those migrants, the outcome of the purposed Delimitation base on Census 2001 figure might be null and void.

           

Another legitimate argument is the dreadful law and order situations still hovering in the state.  For instance, the Disturbed Area Status under the controversial Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) has been imposed since September 8, 1980 till date. It implies that the state still faces a serious security issues. So why should the Government of India has issued a Notification dated on February 28, 2020 leading to initiate delimitation excises in Manipur which is fully contradict to the Delimitation Order, 2008 through which the Commission has completed the delimitation exercise in the entire country except in these four northeastern states including Manipur on the grown of security issues. Thus, the purposed initiative is hasty and inappropriate ones.

 

Conclusion:

The fact and circumstances arrived in the article it may be concluded that the impugned Order  No.  S.O.  903 (E) dated, February 28, 2020 published by Ministry of Law and Justice that had cancelled its earlier notifications which deferred delimitation in Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh due to security issues, saying the exercise could be carried out "now" as the previous circumstances cease to exist should be made revoke through appropriate constitutional means, probably through legal intervention. The Commission is a powerful and independent body and thus once delimitation process is start and complete whose orders cannot be challenged in any Courts of Law. Only option left is to defer the exercise on the line of84th Amendment, that not to have delimitation of constituencies till the first Census after 2026 through legal intervention. The same legal help has already been taken up in Assam.

There are enough evidences and circumstances to keep aside the impugned Order and eventually defer the exercise till the publication of Census 2031. The main ingredient of delimitation is Census data that has attributed with lot of imperfect components. For instance Census report 2001of Manipur is too old and its report is fragmented and incorrect ones. It included a huge number of migrants that should be excluded first before delimitation. Significant variation of growth patterns among the communities are witnessed in the Census 2001 and therefore entitlement assembly seats could not be maintained equilibrium position among the diverse communities that might be threatening to the harmony and integrity of the state. Thus, it indirectly indicates not suitable in the present juncture. This time is also not ripped enough in terms of law and order situation to conduct such mega exercise in the state.

To end with it is a wakeup call that through the purposed 4th Delimitation, entitlement assembly seats for UR might be losing 4 out of existing 40 seats. The present population trend continues then by the 5th Delimitation base on Census 2031, UR again might be losing another 4 seats: 3 go to ST and 1 goes to SC. This is not a healthy sign that would make chaos and anarchy among the various communities settled peacefully since time immemorial. To prevent the outburst of such social disorder, a proper and effective long term planning is highly call for that would maintain uniform growth pattern through uniform performance of Family Welfare Program, and through other Socio-Economic and Development programs. In short, the state needs a sustainable population policy immediately otherwise it might be obsolete. It is not an easy task but might only be turned into reality through the in-depth research outcomes of the Manipur State Population Commission (MSPC).

Need of the hour is to challenge the impugned Order through Courts of Law immediately and secondly, to make commission of MSPC at the earliest.

References:

  1. Census of India. Census Report 1991, Manipur

 

  1. Census of India. Provisional Census Report 2001, Manipur

 

  1. Census of India. Final Census Report 2001, Manipur

 

  1. Directorate of Eco. & Stat. Statistical Hand Book of Manipur. 2017

 

  1. Narendra RK. Impact of NRC updation (Assam) on Manipur : a dynamics of migration. Kangla lanpung 2018; XII(I): 6-50.

 

  1. SC issues notices to Centre, Assam om ple against delimitation process based on 2001 census. May 27, 2020.

 

  1. Parliament of India. Available fromURL:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parliament_of_India

 

  1. Delimitation commission for Jammu and Kashmir, Assam, Manipur, Arunachal, Nagaland formed. Mar 6, 2020. Available fromURL:https://m.economictimes.com/news/politics-and-nation/delimitation-commission-for-jammu-and-kashmir-assam-manipur-arunachal-nagaland-formed/articleshow/74518745.cms

 

  1. SC WP (C) No. 454 0f 2020: Brelitha Marak & Ors Vs UoI & Ors

 

  1. Tariq Bhat. Delimitation commission for J&K, Assam, Manipur, Arunachal, Nagaland formed. The WEEK, March 07, 2020. Available fromURL:https://www.theweek.in/news/india/2020/03/07/delimitation-commission-for-jk-assam-manipur-arunachal-nagaland-formed.html

 

  1. K. Varma. Delimitation in India, Methodological Issues. Economic & Political Weekly, 2006.Available fromURL:https://shodhganga.inflibnet.ac.in/bitstream/10603/193715/7/chapter%205.pdf

 

  1. Delimitation Commission of India.Available fromURL:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delimitation_Commission_of_India

 

  1. 2007(2) GLT 577: MPCC & Ors. Vs. UoI

 

________________________________________

The author of the article is a Renowned Demographer, and HOD of Biostatistics, RIMS, Imphal.

 

Gratitude towards three staff nurses of RIMS hospital

By Priyashini H

Nursing staff of Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) Imphal Manipur headed by Chief Nursing Officer of RIMS Sh.Lata Devi extended  their warmest and heartfelt gratitude to the first batch of Covid19 warriors.

It is worth mentioning that after their six days’ duties, these three staff nurses were quarantined for 14 days coupled up making it altogether for 20 days. And ultimately today, they will be able to go back home to be along with their dear and near ones.  

At a small function held today apropos their discharge, the Chief Nursing Officer along with other RIMS Nursing staff showed their solidarity by handling a flower plant to each three of them for their dedication. 

This is an act of appreciation which will motivate all the Nursing community at RIMS to do better and work hard.

The RIMS’s Nurses showed their gratitude and boost up the morales to the three Staff Nurses for the yeoman services that they had rendered or rather for the works that they have done to keep the community safe and sound from those infected by COVID -19.

Mention maybe made that nurses are playing a vital role in the fight against Covid19 in Manipur.

 Manipur will be safe and most probably will emerge victorious in this fight against covid19 because of selfless toil and sacrifices ,the dedication, determination and grit that are made by the frontline workers like the Nurses, Doctors, paramedics, sanitation workers, police personnel, media personnel and all those who are involved in this pandemic.

Though of course, everybody is involved in one way or the other. There is no denying about it.

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