Manipur Cabinet decides to urge for exemption of Manipur from citizenship bill

Pothashang News Service: Imphal, January 10, 2019: Manipur Cabinet on Thursday decided to urge the Centre for exemption of Manipur from the jurisdiction of the Citizenship Amendment Bill after it reviewed the present situation arising after passage of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016 in the Lok Sabha.

The Cabinet sitting chaired by chief minister N. Biren Singh after a thorough discussion decided to urge the Union government and concerned authority to give assent to the Manipur Peoples’ (Protection) Bill, 2018, a statement released by the chief minister’s secretariat.

The State Cabinet observed that the population of the state is only about 0.2 % of that of the whole of India. Manipur has a large number of ethnic groups, each with unique dialects, customary laws and practices. Adequate constitutional protection is considered necessary to protect these small indigenous population. Accordingly, the Manipur Peoples’ (Protection) Bill, 2018 was passed by the State Legislative Assembly in order to protect the interest of indigenous population of the State. The passage of the Bill had restored the confidence of the people of Manipur. The Bill has since been moved to the President of India for getting his assent. Assent is yet be received by the state government, it added.

The Citizenship Amendment Bill had been passed by the Lok Sabha recently. There is apprehension in the minds of the people of the state that the proposed Citizenship Amendment Bill will not be in the interest of the indigenous people of the state. There is apprehension that once the Citizenship Amendment Bill is implemented in Manipur on becoming a Law, the state could be flooded with a large number of illegal immigrants and foreigners from neighboring countries such as Bangladesh, Pakistan, Myanmar, etc. as international borders are porous. Taking into account of all factors the Cabinet has recommended to the Union Government to give assent to Manipur Peoples’ (Protection) Bill, 2018 and also to exclude Manipur from the jurisdiction of Citizenship Amendment Bill, said the statement.

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