IMPHAL, Oct 19: While statements in support of declaring Sadar Hills as a full-fledged district was clearly overwhelming, a Senapati-based Naga body raised strong objection against the creation of the new revenue district in addition to asserting that carving out the district out of Naga-inhabited areas will tantamount to transgression of not only the existing demography but will have far reaching consequences.
In what could be described as one of the most outrageous statements presented at a public hearing of the Committee on Reorganisation of Administrative and Police district Boundaries, representatives of Southern Senapati Naga Village Council questioned antecedents of the Kuki tribe settled in Manipur.
Speaking to newspersons after deposing at the fourth public hearing of the Committee today Council president Marikiu John affirmed that Kukis should first reassess their origins rather than embarking of a campaign for Sadar Hills district.
Stating that the Council vehemently opposed the demand being spearheaded by the Sadar Hills District-hood Demand Committee, Marikiu affirmed that even if the demand is conceded not an inch of land of the Nagas should be compromised or included to the proposed district.
The Council president also cited absence of a Nagas representative in the SHD-DC as a stumbling block in the creation of Sadar Hills.
The fourth public hearing held at the office chamber of the Chief Secretary, who is Chairman of the Government-constituted panel, was also attended by the Director General of Police Y Joykumar, Commissioner (Home) LP Golmei and Link Commissioner S Sunderlal.
In sharp contrast to contention of the Senapati Council, president of Bungpi Area Chief Association (Senapati) Paokhai Lupheng said the Association backing the SHDDC demand reiterated its stand that Kuki-inhabited villages in Bungpi area should remain under Sadar Hills district when the issue is formalised.
Paokhai reportedly pointed out to the Committee members that the police station set up near Maphou Dam should be brought under the ambit of Sadar Hills administration from its present existence under Imphal East district.
chief of Sadar Joute Village Manglem Changsa, who also interacted with the newspersons conveyed that village chiefs and chairmen covered by kangchup SDC Circle Villages handed over a joint statement to the Committee re- affirming support to the demand for a Sadar Hills district.
He highlighted that the joint representation reminded the Committee of the former Chief Minister W Nipamacha clearly defining the boundary of Sadar hills with the inclusion of Saikul, Saitu and Kangpokpi blocks, and that the same demarcation should be upheld when Sadar Hills district is formally announced.
The same stand was reportedly affirmed by District council member SD Vaiphei, who said the existing boundary covered by Sadar Hills and the official demarcation as had been defined by the MLR Act 1950 should be preserved.
Representatives of three other organisations, who were supposed to depose before the panel did not appear at the hearing.
According to the joint memorandum handed to the Committee by Chiefs/chairmen of Kangchup SDC Circle villages and Leaders, decision to submit the joint representation was adopted at a special meeting held on September 7, 2011.
It maintained that Sadar Hills district is not an overnight issue but has a long and clear-cut boundaries since its creation in 1971.
We demand not creation of new district or revenue district by altering the boundaries but ‘restoring the full-fledge district without altering the existing boundaries’, affirmed the joint memorandum while pointing out that villages of Kangchup area paying hill house to Kangpokpi sub division presently Saitu-Gamphazol sub-division after creation of the new sub-division, testify that land of the villages belong to Kangchup Circle of Saitu Gamphazol sub-division Sadar Hills, Manipur.
Moreover, coverage of the said villages under Outer Manipur Parliamentary election and to be more specific the recently held Sadar Hills ADC election leave no room for debate on authenticity with regard to existence of Kangchup circle villages under Sadar hills, the memorandum added.