Meghalaya: KHADC chief, traditional leaders meet Guv on Clan Bill


SHILLONG | Feb 25, 2019:

The Synjuk Ki Rangbah Kur Ka Bri Hynniewtrep (SKRKKBH) today met Governor Tathagata Roy to submit a memorandum on the need to approve the Clan Administration Bill, 2018 passed by the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC), at the earliest.

Talking to reporters after their meeting with the Governor, SKRKKBH president, Hispreaching Son Shylla said that the 5000 plus clan of the Bri Hynniewtrep would have to register with the district council if the bill is passed.

"As of now, there are very few clans which have the Seng Kur. We want the Governor to give special consideration to this bill to ensure that every clan constitute the Seng Kur. The formation of seng kur would help the Khasi indigenous community to be more organised. We would like the Seng Kur to stand on the issues afflicting the Khasi indigenous community,"  Shylla said.

Stating that the meeting with the Governor was a postive one, he said that he (Roy) understands the uniqueness of the Khasi indigenous community and gave an assurance that he will look into the bill.

Replying to a query on the observation of the State Government while returing the clan bill to the Council, he said that the State Government had return most of the Bills passed by the Council with some observation.

He however said that the present system which has been followed where the Council has to forward the bill to the Governor through the District Council Affairs department is unacceptable adding that it is for this reason that the bills passed by the Council is lingering at the Secretariat for several years.

"As per the Sixth Schedule and the AD Rules, the Council should submit the bills directly to the Governor to ensure that the Secretariat does not unnecessary hold on the bills for years," Shylla said.

He stated that the Governor told them they he would to seek the advice of the State Government. "We have nothing to say on the Governor seeking advice from the Government. Our concern is that the bill should be directly forwarded to the Governor," he said adding that the Governor had told him to meet him again on March 1 as the CEM of the KHADC to submit in writing on this matter.

According to him, if there is a message from the Governor on any bill then they can take up in the House of the Council. "But they cannot take up in the House if the observation on the bills comes from the Government," SKRKKBH president said. He further said that the Council has decided to approach the Supreme Court on this issue since Paragraph 19 1 B in the Sixth Schedule empowers the district council to directly submit the bill to the Governor.

When asked about the request made by the Joint Action Committee of the Dorbar Kur to Home Minister, James PK Sangma to put the clan bill in the public domain, he said that there are people who would like to twist and delay things.

"We had given them a copy of the bill when they had come to the district council.. But they had not submit any kind of suggestions. We would not like to entertain people who like to twist things only to delay this bill," he said.

Shylla said that the simple reason that the clan bill is needed to allow the Seng Kur to issue the clan certificate. Due to the loopholes in the system even a person belonging to the Nepalee clan Thapa has managed to change their title to Thabah only through an affidavit in the court," he said. According to him, it is only the Seng Kur that can identify on the clan adding that the Seng Kur and Rangbah Kur needs to be recognised by the district council.

"On the recognition of the district council, the seng kur can issue the clan certificate. On the basis of the clan certificate, the district council can issue the scheduled tribe certificate," he said.

Meanwhile, Shylla said that the system to allow online application of scheduled tribe certificate has allowed the non-Khasi to become Khasi.

"The non-Khasi who have manage to obtain the clan certificate can evade income tax and even contest in an election from the reserve seats," he said.