The Khasi Author Society appeal, Union Home Minister to implement ILP in Meghalaya  

Shillong, Dec 18: The Khasi Author Society (KAS) has written to the Union Home Minister Mr Amit Shah and Meghalaya Chief Minister Mr Conrad K Sangma and appeal  both of them to implement the Inner Line Permit in Meghalaya.

The letter sent by the KAS to the Union Home Minister and Meghalaya Chief Minister state that  the Khasi Authors’ Society which has been consistently working for the promotion and development of Khasi language, literature and culture for nearly four decades now, has closely watched over the prevailing law and order situation in the state of Meghalaya, due to the people’s reaction against the contentious Citizenship Amendment Bill which has now become an act. In its Executive Committee meeting held on the 17th December, 2019, members deliverated on the present imbroglio.

The KAS said that, despite the justification and arguments put forward by the central leadership in favour of the act (CAA), the indigenous communities of the state, including the Khasis and the Garos feel that this act will bring about demographic change and their genuine rights as the original citizens of the state will be in great danger.

History reminds us that during the British colonial rule, a number of Khasi villages including Jaintiapur, the then capital of the Hima Jaintia Jaintia Kingdom had been tagged to the Sylhet District, under the modern Bangladesh. The people have lost all the plain portions of their  land due to the hegemonic rule of the colonial government.

As the community, once been pushed to the periphery; and the hurts have not been cured. Now, if the then British areas in Shillong and Tura which are located at the heart of these two important cities of the state are not exempted from the purview of the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019, the process of pushing the indigenous communities to the borders will continue even in independent India.

The concern of our people, both young and old is not so much about religion, but about their land which is very dear to them; it is about space, economy, culture and about their very existence. Hence, if their concern cannot be addressed, one might foresee the long years of  turmoil and unrest ahead.

This is why the people of Meghalaya irrespective of religious faiths and party lines are now in unison against the act (CAA). Necessary steps must therefore be taken by both the State and the Centre to prevent the situation from going out of hand.

After a great deal of thought, the Khasi Authors’ Society is of the view that the best mechanism to bring the issue to a logical end is ‘‘Implementation of the Inner Line Permit’’. The KAS support the demand of the Meghalaya NGOs for implementing the Inner Line Permit in the state.

The KAS also appeal to the State Government and the Centre (Government of India) to initiate steps for implementation of the Inner Line Permit in Meghalaya to prevent the application of the Citizenship Amendment Act, 2019. If the Inner Line Permit is being implemented in the state of Manipur to make its people celebrate, why not the same yardstick be used for Meghalaya, the letter was sign by Dr DRL Nonglait President and Mr Ronald P Kharshiing general Secretary of the Khasi Author Society.


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