Meghalaya Assembly discusses the status of Inner Line Permit


By Ibankyntiew Mawrie and Ladiangti Rani | SHILLONG:

The Meghalaya Legislative Assembly, on Monday, witnessed an active discussion on the status of the demand for implementing Inner Line Permit in the State, during the ongoing budget session.

Nongpoh MLA Mayralborn Syiem had brought up a zero hour notice in the House concerning a media report on the recent meeting between Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, and Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong.

According to the report, Shah agreed to discuss only issues relating to the Meghalaya Residents’ Safety and Security Act (MRSSA) and avoided discussing the Inner Line Permit.

Starting the discussion, Syiem highlighted the importance of implementing the ILP in the State.

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“ILP is an issue that has been there at every discussion, and it is a worrying sign to see reports of the Centre asking the State to choose either ILP or 6th Schedule,” Syiem said.

He pointed out that the ILP and Sixth Schedule should not be mixed.

“Sixth Schedule should not be mixed or compromised with the demand for ILP,” he stated.

The Congress legislator also stated that there is a need to “sharpen the teeth of the Sixth Schedule to see the District Councils become an asset rather than a liability to the State.”

Syiem also sought clarification from the government on the status of the meeting with the Union Home Minister on whether Meghalaya would get the ILP.

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Replying to the Zero Hour Notice, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma said the State Government had taken serious note on implementing the ILP in the State.

“The Government has held a series of meetings with all stakeholders to discuss the matter,” Sangma said.

Earlier, the Legislative Assembly, on December 19, 2019, had passed a resolution to urge the Centre to implement ILP in Meghalaya, and the State Government, on several occasions, had approached the Centre to discuss the matter.

“We also submitted a memorandum during a meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah on February 21, 2021,” Sangma added.

We may note that Home Minister Amit Shah had assured to listen to all concerns of pro-ILP groups during his two-day visit to Shillong in March.

(Edited by Andre Kongri)