Saturday, June 10, 2023

NPP MLA in Manipur endorses ST tag for Meetei/Meitei community


A legislator of the National People’s Party (NPP) in Manipur on Sunday supported the ST tag for Meitei/Meitei as Scheduled Tribe Demand Committee Manipur (STDCM) continued its campaign despite strong objections raised by many tribal based civil bodies, particularly student bodies.
NPP MLA Khuraijam Loken asserted the ST tag for the Meitei/Meetei needs to be fulfilled before the arrival of train in Imphal.
Leaders and members of the STDCM and bodies supporting the ST status demand for the Meitei/Meetei today met with NPP legislator, the party extending outside support to the BJP-led government in the state, at his residence in Wangoi in Imphal West district today.
During the meeting, the STDCM submitted a memorandum seeking the MLA’s support to their demand for ST tag. The STDCM has been meeting ministers and MLAs of the ruling parties to seek their support to its demand .
The committee is pressing the state government to furnish the specific recommendations along with required ethnography and latest socio-economic survey reports of the Meitei/Meetei to the Centre for consideration of the demand for ST status.
After a patient hearing to the leaders of the STDCM, the MLA observed that inclusion of Meitei/Meetei in the ST list is necessary so as to bring the community on a comparable level with other communities of the state. He opined that living together as ST will bring an end to the differences among the ethnic communities of the state. ST tag will also help end enmity among the different communities in future will bring an end to the multiple divides in the social status among the communities as OBC, ST and SC, the MLA observed. The difference in the status has always been an issue in uniting the ethnic communities in the state, he said.
The NPP legislator further assured all possible support in pressing the state government to fulfill the demand of the STDCM.
Many ministers and MLAs of the ruling BJP, to mention here, have extended their support to the demand of the STDCM asserting that it was a legitimate demand. However, many tribal based CSOs, particularly student bodies like ATSUM, ANSAM and KSO had raised strong objections to the demand of the STDCM.


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