Peruse CAB before jumping to conclusion: N Biren

STAFF REPORTER
IMPHAL, 6th Feb: While urging people of Manipur not to resort to any action guided by sheer emotion on any issue, chief minister N Biren has called for a minute discussion on whether the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill (CAB) would affect the state or not and number of illegal immigrants staying in the state who are to be granted citizenship under the Bill.
The chief minister gave his observation regarding CAB, 2016 while speaking at the inauguration function of a newly constructed training cum production centre of Manipur Khadi and Village Industries Board (MKVIB) at Lamphelpat in Imphal West district on Wednesday.
As chief guest of the function, N Biren said that the state government is fully aware of the tension among people since the passage of CAB in the Lok Sabha but there is need for a thorough para-wise deliberation on the Bill before coming to any conclusion while maintaining that only two major changes were done to the original citizenship law. Nevertheless, Biren maintained that government is for the people and the present state government would never hesitate in acting as per the wish of the people if it has merit.
The fact that India is a vast country having 29 states, seven Union Territories and a population of over 130 crore should never be overlooked. It is a rightful demand if the state asks the Government of India to protect the miniscule indigenous population of the state, their identity and culture. However, it is questionable whether the state's demand is justifiable or not if it asks for the complete scrapping of a Bill meant for the entire country as different states and regions have different problems and issues. As such, the matter should be pondered upon minutely before indulging in any emotionally-guided action or agitation, N Biren said and appealed to people to discuss whether the CAB would affect indigenous people of Manipur first.
According to N Biren, the state has every right to safeguard miniscule indigenous population and a decision to this effect was already taken by the state government and even apprised the Union government to insert a clause in CAB for safeguarding indigenous population of the state. As such a clause could not be inserted immediately, the Bill has to be called back for discussion among legal and constitutional for initiating necessary action, Biren said, adding that state government had also pressed the Central government for presidential assent to Manipur People Bill, which will ensure safeguard of indigenous people of the state.
While reiterating that the present government is fully committed to bringing a developmental change in the state, Biren also talked about various developmental works and welfare schemes taken up by the state government like CMHT and 'School Fagathansi'.
Textiles, commerce and industries minister Th Biswajit, who also attended the function, said that two cement factories would be set up in the state at the earliest. As big industries are not feasible and suitable in Manipur, the state should focus on developing Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME), he observed. The Minister also said that efforts are being made to revive Manipur Spinning Mill, Loitang Khunou as soon as possible.
Mentioning about Prime Minister Narendra Modi's efforts towards development and popularising Khadi products in the country, Biswajit recalled Modi's statement – ‘Khadi for nation, Khadi for fashion’ – the idea that Khadi can become a symbol of national pride and a fashion statement. He also urged each and every citizen of the state to buy one Khadi product each to support Khadi industry in the state.
In his presidential address, Oinam MLA and MKVIB chairman L Radhakishore said that the Board was established in September 1967. He said that almost all the rural vocations can be accommodated in Khadi industry as it can enhance rural economy as well the economy of the state.


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