DIPHU, Dec 15 – The Union Home Secretary Shambhu Singh has stated that it is not feasible to implement the Article 244 (A) in case of a separate State for the hill districts of Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao. This was informed by the United Forum for Hills State (UFHS) at a press conference here on Friday at the official conference hall of the Chief Executive Member, KAAC after meeting Central leaders recently.
Tuliram Ronghang, vice president, UFHS and Chief Executive Member, Karbi Anglong Autonomous Council and Mongol Sing Timung, member, UFHS and Executive Member, KAAC addressed the press conference. Ronghang said that the UFHS delegation reached Delhi on December 11 and submitted a memorandum to Sushil Kumar Shinde, Union Home Minister on the issue of a separate State for the twin hill districts Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao. The UFHS delegation also met Shambhu Singh and discussed the issue seriously.
He admitted that the discussion with the Union Home Minister was a significant one. After discussion with Sushil Kumar Shinde on statehood demand for an hour, Shambhu Singh, the Union Home Secretary in charge of North East assured to visit Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao districts in the first week of next year, said Tuliram Ronghang during the press conference. During the visit, the Union Home Secretary would interact with various civil organisations in the district to take views on the separate State demand, Ronghang added.
The Union Home Secretary pointed out to the infeasibility of implementing Article 244 (A) (dealing with carving out of separate States from tribal-dominated areas) in case of separate State in the near future because the same process had also been exercised by the Central government in Meghalaya.
Reacting to the suggestion given by the Union Home Ministry on the feasibility of implementation of Article 244 (A), Ronghang said that as Article 244 (A) was invoked for the formation of a separate Meghalaya State, so, implementation of Article 3 (Separate State) would be more appropriate in this case.
Ronghang said that the Opposition parties should also welcome and join hands for a separate State and all parties in the district should fight unitedly under a single platform.
He added that before the peace agreement was signed between the Centre and the UPDS no senior government officials from the Centre had visited the district and taken a view about the Statehood issue. This is for the first time since the movement that senior officials have assured to visit the district on the issue of a separate State. This became a reality after the initiative taken by the newly-formed UFHS, Ronghang said.
Ronghang also said that all public representatives led by Congress, will resign from their respective portfolios if the Centre does not heed the demand of the UFHS.