CSOs call NH shutdown over 'powerless' DC, SP
CORRESPONDENT KANGPOKPI, 9th Nov: Subsequent to the deadline served to the state government for empowerment of Kangpokpi district’s deputy commissioner (DC) and superintendent of police (SP) lapsing on Wednesday without any positive response, Kuki Inpi, Kangpokpi and civil society organisations have decided to go ahead with the 36 hours total shutdown of both the National Highways in Manipur sector from 6 am of November 15.
Earlier, Kuki Inpi, Kangpopi and other CSOs jointly served ultimatum to the state government for formal conferring of constitutional power to the DC and the SP within November 8 for proficient and effective dispensing of their respective duties, especially in implementing development programmes under District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) and election related issues.
The decision to enforce the national highway shutdown along the Imphal-Dimapur and Imphal-Jiribam routes was taken during a joint meeting of Kuki Inpi and CSOs Kangpokpi held on Thursday at KSO, Sadar Hills administrative office at Kangpokpi town.
Enraged with the alleged indifferent attitude of the state authorities towards the legitimate demand for empowering the two top district administrators, representatives of Kuki Inpi and CSOs opined that the state government has been taking undue advantage of the public tolerance.
Though the district denizens have been abstaining from resorting to any serious agitation on the ground that the government will honour aspiration of the people and in acknowledgement of granting district status, continuous defiance to the legitimate demand is akin to inviting launch of intense agitation, they expressed.
The joint meeting also vehemently condemned the BJP-led coalition government and questioned the sincerity and commitment of the N Biren Singh-led government towards its catchy ‘Go to Hills’ slogan.
While reflecting on peaceful disposition of the district denizens with the expectation that the government will duly honour the demand, Kuki Inpi Kangpokpi general secretary Lamminlun Singsit pointed out that the DC bereft of power to carry out DRDA and DEO assignments tantamount to making a mockery of the district creation. Moreover, DRDA is the principal organ at the district level which acts as a catalyst in the development process, he said.
Lamminlun also highlighted that despite having 99 sub-divisions, the highest in the state, Kangpokpi district is yet to have a single Sub-Divisional Police Officer along with noting that the SP being constrained to draw funds from Senapati district nearly a year after appointment as full-fledged SP testify government’s inconsiderate attitude.
Further stating that the district has insufficient police forces, he posed: “Is such inadequacy justifiable for a full-fledged district?” Seeking cooperation and support of the entire people of Manipur towards its legitimate demands, Lamminlun maintained that if people of Manipur and the state government consider aspiration of the Kangpokpi denizens to join the race for development to that of assisting development in Nagaland or Mizoram or Assam then the government or the general public may take any action against Kuki Inpi and CSOs Kangpokpi for calling the shutdown.
The Inpi secretary, however, asserted that “we dare to face any consequences as we believe and feel Kangpokpi district development is only for Manipur and its development and nothing else”.
Speaking to media persons after the meeting, KSO Sadar Hills president Thangminlen Kipgen pointed out that people of district restrained themselves from taking recourse to any sort of agitation as the people had faith upon the state authorities.
However, as there has been no positive response it is now clear that the government is inviting agitation, which will be both very unfortunate and disgraceful, he said.
Thangminlen declared that movement of all vehicles, including private and passenger carriers will be totally prohibited during the 36 hours shutdown and that the government should be any held accountable/responsible for any untoward incident that occur during the period of shutdown.
Terming the highway shutdown as the ‘final ultimatum’ to the government for honouring the legitimate demands, he cautioned that in case the proposed agitation does not generate positive response from the state authorities then the government should prepare for more intense agitation in the future.
The Inpi president also reminded about the impact of Sadar Hills district-hood movement in 2011 along with cautioning the government that the people of Kangpokpi district might be compelled to go beyond the 2011 movement for the sake of bringing development in Kangpokpi district.