Imphal, Sept 05:
The Zeliangrong Civil Organisations (ZCOs) i.e. Zeliangrong Baudi, Zeliangrong Youth Front and Zeliangrong Students Union strongly denounced the impugned Orders of the Speaker, Manipur Legislative Assembly Secretariat issued by the Secretary of the Manipur Legislative Assembly on September 1, 2021 inducting 8 (eight) MLAs of Manipur valley areas who are elected and representing different unreserved Assembly Constituencies into the Hills Areas Committee (HAC) namely Lourembam Rameshwor Meetei, MLA, 6-Keirao A/C; Khumukcham Joykisan Singh, MLA, 9-Thangmeiban A/C; Karam Shyam, MLA, 20-Langthabal A/C; Nameirakpam Loken Singh, MLA, 24-Nambol A/C; Laishram Radhakishor Singh, MLA, 25-Oinam A/C; Y. Anas Khan, MLA, 30-Lilong A/C; Keisham Meghachandra Singh, MLA, 32-Wangkhem A/C; Thokchom Radheshyam Singh, MLA, 33-Heirok A/C. The Speaker Orders further mentioned that MLA, 8-Lamlai A/C will also be Member of the HAC as and when election is held and vacant seat is filled up so that the total memberships of the Hills Areas Committee (HAC) shall be 29 (twenty nine) Members with addition of 9 (nine) Members.
The Speaker Orders is bereft of legal justification simultaneously superseded the President’s Order, 1972 and also clearly reflected the ill motive of the Manipur Govt., its attempt to infringe upon the constitutional safeguard and protection enshrined in the Constitution of India for the hills people.
It is pertinent to note that the President of India Mr. V.V. Giri Orders issued in 1972 clearly mentioned that the Chief Minister and Speaker shall not be members of the Hills Areas Committee (HAC). The Constitution of Hills Areas Committee under the Article 371C was enacted by an act of Parliament and the same was issued under the executive order of the President of India, Mr. V.V. Giri in 1972 which is a statutory body under the Constitution of India. So far, neither the Parliament has amended the Article 371C nor the President of India has issued any executive order replacing the said act.Therefore, the Speaker who is not the members of the Committee but issuing Orders inducting eight MLAs at will into the Hills Areas Committee is a clear case of undue interference, arbitrary, infringement and an act of dictatorship which deserves serious penalty. Indeed the Speaker is the custodian of the democratic institution like Manipur Legislative Assembly which duly constituted by the Members elected under the Constitution of India. And it is the bounden duty of the Speaker to uphold the functioning of the Legislature and other statutory body related with the Manipur Legislative Assembly and to fulfil the constitutional obligations of those statutory body too.
The Zeliangrong Civil Organizations hailed and paid high respect to those responsible and sensible MLAs who have withdrawn their Memberships from the Hills Areas Committee fully knowing well of the legal invalidity. The withdrawal of the 8 (eight) MLAs, who were illegally inducted as the Members into the Hills Areas Committee (HAC) on the next day of the Speaker’s Orders shows the Speaker’s Orders is neither acceptable nor legally tenable. The Secretary, Manipur Legislative Assembly on sensing the disastrous consequences of the Hills people has issued an Order on 4th September, 2021 which has only “kept in abeyance” which is nothing but a time buying tactics which is not acceptable to the hills people of Manipur. The demand of the hills people is for complete withdrawal of that impugned order.
The people of the entire State were hopeful that the new Govt. may usher peace and harmony in the State when the new govt. led by BJP party come to power. But without completion of even one full term the BJP led Govt. under the leadership of Mr. N. Biren Singh as the Chief Minister of Manipur have resorted to policies which have hurt the sentiment and interest of the people particularly the Hills people. Manipur is a State of plural societies, therefore, any political party or political leaders trying to stir up the sentiment and attempt to consolidate the interest of a single community in order to overshadow the interest and ignore the sentiment of other communities will be a disastrous and futile exercise which would be detrimental to peaceful co-existence. The Zeliangrong Civil Organizations (ZCOs) urged the Speaker of the Manipur Legislative Assembly to strictly adhere to the rule of law and the Govt. of Manipur to realize that the priority of the Govt. is to bring development and progress with trust and confidence among the citizens. The Zeliangrong Civil Organizations (ZCOs) appeal the Governor, who is the guardian of the Constitution to intervene into the matter and ensure that such unacceptable and legally untenable Order’s is never issued in the future.