Governor Najma A. Heptulla has appealed the JAC Against Anti-Tribal Bills (Churachandpur) to allow a decent burial with all religious rites to the dead bodies lying in the morgue and to participate wholeheartedly in the democratic process of dialogue for resolving their issues.
In a press statement released today Heptulla stated that the agitations which erupted in the hill districts of Manipur immediately after passing of the 3 (three) Bills on ILPS, considered by the hill people to be anti-tribal, in the Manipur Legislative Assembly on 31/8/2015 led to the loss of 9 (nine) young lives in Churachandpur District. More than a year has passed; all the dead bodies except for one are still lying unclaimed in the morgue. The family members of the deceased have not been able to perform the last rites and give a decent burial to their loved ones. This is heart wrenching and not in consonance with the teachings of any of our religions, added the governor.
Times have changed and after the 11th Manipur Legislative Assembly Elections a new popular Government is now in place. I am happy that the new Government has taken the initiative for breaking the ice between the Government and the JAC against Anti-Tribal Bills and bringing the leaders of the latter to the negotiating table. There are already signs of a thaw in their rigid positioning. We are living in a democratic country and dialogue is the preferred means of resolving issues in a democracy. There is nothing that cannot be resolved through dialogue and we should all repose full faith in this democratic process. Therefore, I fervently appeal to all concerned particularly to the JAC members to allow a decent burial with all religious rites to the dead bodies lying in the morgue and to participate wholeheartedly in the democratic process of dialogue for resolving their issues, said the governor.
First round talk of State Government with the Joint Action Committee Against Anti Tribal Bills was held yesterday at chief minister’s secretariat chaired by the chief minister N. Biren Singh which resulted a positive outcome.
In the first round of talk with the JAC, Chief Minister Shri N. Biren Singh expressed his desire to let the families of the victims perform the last rites to the dead bodies considering the mental trauma families of the victims might be having which cannot be measured. Saying that there is no country/state or even a family without any problem, he said that any crisis or any problem can be resolved through a series of meetings. He appealed earnestly the JAC and the people of Churachandpur to come to the negotiating table and said that the Government is ready to have series of negotiations for resolving any issue for the betterment of the State and its people. He also thanked the JAC for responding to the appeal of the govt. for talks. He reiterated that Manipur is made up of hills and valley and without hills and tribals there is no Manipur. Pointing out that government is for the people, Biren said that his government just after assuming power has been successful in resolving the longest economic blockade through negotiation and thanked the United Naga Council for lifting their economic blockade.
The JAC also submitted a charter of demands to the government and discussed. After the discussion, the meeting resolved to have a next round of talk tentatively on Sunday.