JAC reiterates boycott call of tribal MLAs

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TSE, IMPHAL, Mar 10: The Joint Action Committee Against 'Anti-Tribal Bills' has urged the tribal populace of the State to continue imposing public boycott on all the tribal MLAs who have refused to resign despite mounting pressure from the public.

Significantly during the protest at Churachandpur, the houses of a number of MLAs and a Minister were burnt.
The bodies of the nine persons killed during the protest on August 31/September 1 last year are still lying in state.

In a statement, the JAC said that the boycotted tribal MLAs must not be allowed to set foot on tribal territories. They must not be given any platform in public functions and ceremonies, the JAC added.

On September 12, 2015, the JAC had unanimously resolved to declare public boycott, till further notice, on all the tribal MLAs, who refused to feel the pulse of the tribal populace and declined to resign in spite of mounting pressure from the general public.

All Tribal Students' Union, Manipur (ATSUM) had made an appeal on August 30, 2015 to all the tribal MLAs to abstain from the special session of the Manipur State Assembly wherein the three Bills, viz, the Protection of Manipur Peoples Bill, 2015, the Manipur Land Revenue and Land Reforms (Seventh Amendment) Bill, 2015 and the Manipur Shops and Establishments (Second Amendment) Bill, 2015 were intended to be passed. However, the appeal went unheeded, the JAC said.

The tribal apex bodies (Kuki Inpi, Hmar Inpui and Zomi Council) in their meeting on September 1, 2015 had unanimously given an ultimatum to the Hill Areas Committee to convene a meeting at the earliest and take appropriate steps to either repeal the Bills or insert exceptional clause in the Bills within 10 days.

However, no response in any form has been received from the Hill Areas Committee till date, the JAC said.
The JAC in its emergency meeting held on September 7, 2015 resolved to support the 10-day ultimatum given by the tribal apex bodies and agreed to impose public boycott on all the tribal MLAs if no desirable response is received from the Hill Areas Committee by midnight of September 10, 2015, or if they do not tender their resignation.
The JAC said that no response of any kind has been received in this regard from the Hill Areas Committee till date.

There were rumours of the resignation of some tribal MLAs and a media team went to verify the same on September 12, 2015. However, the media team could not get satisfactory response from the tribal MLAs, the JAC said.
There is no intimation or communication to the tribal apex bodies like ATSUM and JAC from any of the tribal MLAs regarding their resignation, added the JAC.