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Shillong, Jan 23:

The United Democratic Party (UDP) general secretary, Jemino Mawthoh said that the people of the State need to be optimistic that the Centre will comply to the demand for implementing the Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the State.

Mawthoh made this statement while replying to the question on the next move of the party if the Centre declines to give ILP to the State.

The UDP general secretary, however, said that the other mechanism which is available to safeguard the local indigenous people of the State is the Meghalaya Residents Safety and Security Act (MRSSA).

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“We will have to come up with mechanisms which will not infringe on the rights of the people and also not come in conflict with the provisions of the constitution,” Mawthoh said while talking to reporters after the Central Executive Committee (CEC) meeting here today.

Pointing out that the passing of the CAA by the Parliament was a wakeup call for the people of the Northeast, he said that it is important to capitalise on the opportunity to come up with something concrete to curb influx.

To a question if the Union Home Minister, Amit Shah was keen to meet the Government delegation, Mawthoh said that there may be a little bit of delay but the state government will follow up on the matter and be able to meet him.

Meanwhile, United Democratic Party (UDP) senior working president, Bindo Matthew Lanong said that the centre should implement Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state since Khasi-Janita and Garo hills were mentioned in the original Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR), 1873.

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“Originally the whole of Meghalaya was under ILP. However, in 1897 it was repealed from Garo hills for some reasons. One being that the plain belts of Garo hills which was then under Lakhimpur district of Assam – here the Zamindari system was prevalent and ILP was repealed so as to allow the British officials to come here and collect taxes,” Lanong said after the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the party. He also said that in the original act, Manipur was not there but subsequently the state was brought under ILP.

Manipur was brought under ILP on December 11, 2019. Nagaland’s Dimapur, which was excluded from the ILP, has also been included into the regime.

“Since Meghalaya was in the original act. We demand implementation of ILP in the state,” the UDP working president said.

Meanwhile, the UDP Central Executive Committee (CEC) also endorsed the resolution adopted by the Meghalaya Legislative Assembly to urge upon the Centre to implement ILP in the State.

Lanong said that the party also strongly opposed the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019 which is in line with the sentiments of the people of the State.

The UDP senior working president also hopes that the Supreme Court bench,which will be hearing the various petitions of the CAA, will give its verdict as per aspirations of the people of the country.

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