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JAC Press Release ~ June 21, 2016

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

/ Published by VIRTHLI

Press Release
Lamka, June 21, 2016 

The Joint Action Committee Against Anti-Tribal Bills (JAC) met with a six-member team claiming to be 'concerned citizens' from Manipur/Imphal Valley yesterday at KKL Complex IB Road, Lamka and had a discussion on the ongoing impasse between the Manipur Govemmmt and the tribal people.

The JAC had conveyed to the team how the Manipur Government had not shown any interest in solving the issue, and that in spite of assuring the JAC delegation on December 29, 2015 that further talks will be held once the JAC submits a document outlining the anti-tribal nature of the three bills, viz., the Protection of Manipur Peoples Bill, 2015; the Manipur Land Revenue and Land Rearms (Seventh Amendment) Bill 2015 and the Manipur Shops and Establishments (Second Amendment) Bill 2015, the Government had refused to meet with the JAC even though a 6-page document detailing the anti-tribal nature of the bills was submit.ted on January 11, 2016. [Transcript by]
The JAC members also expressed to the Valley team the communal mindset of the Manipur Government which was evident in its sending of an 'All Political Party' delegation to Delhi to pressurize the Union Government to give President's assent to the three bills after a mere three days of protest by the Meitei Valley people, whereas the nine month long agitation by the tribals in the Hills of Manipur have been conveniently ignored by the Manipur Government till date!

The JAC is always of the opinion that since the bills were passed by the Manipur Government, and that as the JAC had submitted its Charter of Demands to the Manipur Government, the solution lies with the Manipur Government alone and not with the Joint Committee on Inner Line Permit Systems (JCILPS). The JAC also has no objection against the JCILPS or any other civil society organization from talking to the Manipur Government about the demands putforth by the JAC if they so desire.

However, never during the course of the conversation with the six-member visiting team did the JAC members ever expressed their desire for direct talks with the JCILPS, nor to any other civil society organization for that matter. Instead, it was conveyed to the visiting team that the JAC is open to talks with the Manipur Government in spite of the whole issue having crossed its threshold point. [Transcript by]

In spite of having made the JAC's stand clear, the `concerned citizens' group had, to our utter dismay, opportunely misquoted the JAC Chief Convertor in its press note to the media as saying that the JAC is -open to any dialogue with the JCILPS." While appreciating the visiting team for their concern over the issue, it is unfortunate that the team portrays the JAC as desiring to talk with JCILPS while the fact of the matter is that the JAC is open for talks with the Manipur Government and not with the JCILPS.

Information  and Publicity Department

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