Phumlen, Khoidum Lamjao villagers ban LDA from entering in its region

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Imphal: Residents of 26 villages settling around Pumlen and Khoidum Lamjao unanimously have resolved to ban Loktak Development Authority (LDA) from Pumlen and Khoidum Lamjao Wetland region along with Loktak Protection Act, 2006.

Phumlen Pat Khoidum Lamjao Kanba Apunba Lup secretary Salam Joy said village representatives of the wetland region gathered at the community hall of Leimakhong Lairembi, Nongmaikhong to deliberate on the issue of the entry of LDA in Pumlen and Khoidum Lamjao areas, on Monday.

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The meeting was attended by Zilla Parishad member Chongtham Indrajit of Waikhong and Ningthoujam Ayingbi GP Pradhan as dignitaries.

Many villagers spoke reflecting their concerns on Loktak Protection Act 2006 stating that it is not only draconian to the fishing community but also needs to be repealed.

Some raised concern about their livelihood, culture fishery and agriculture which can be affected if most land is reclaimed by lake conservation. They gave particular emphasis on the need to balance conservation and people.

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A long discussion on the National Wetlands rules of 2017 was conducted that the state has not done their mandatory homework of Notification of wetlands including preparation of brief document for Pumlen and Khoidum Lamjao. The state government’s recent aggressive stance on encroachment and eviction is not a healthy signal for boundary demarcation and for wetlands conservation as it requires close cooperation between people and wetlands authorities, the secretary said.

The meeting unanimously resolved that LDA will not be allowed to enter the Pumien and Khoidum Lamjao wetland region and opposed the Loktak Protection Act 2006.

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All lands occupied by residents of the 26 villages must be protected, and that survey and demarcation of the lake must be done along with the land owners, the villagers demanded.

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