IMPHAL, Dec 27 – A team of the Local Support Group on Removal of Protected Area Permit, Manipur (LOSGROM) will leave here for New Delhi tomorrow to apprise Prime Minister and Union Home Minister of the exigency for the removal of PAP from the State.
Speaking to media persons at Manipur Press Club here today, convener of LOSGROM RK Shivchandra said that since the launch of the global online signature campaign by Manipuri Association of Canada on December 5 from Canada, more than 1,000 people have signed the online appeal letter from across 75 countries while many more have also signed on the hard copies of the same appeal letter.
The global online campaign for the removal of PAP also includes plea for the revoking of the Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958.
PAP restricts the visit of foreigners to Manipur. People from Myanmar, which is the nearest country to Manipur, are always arrested at Tengnoupal while coming from the border town of Moreh for not procuring PAP. Not only this, PAP even restricts overseas Manipuris and non-resident Manipuris from visiting their ancestral home, rued Shivchandra.
The convener quoted the Union Home Minister as stating that the purpose of PAP is “protection of culture” of the people in certain places of the country, and rebutted that the people of Manipur do not understand in what way foreigners visiting Manipur for business or tourism can harm Manipuri culture while it can not do so to other Indian cultures.
PAP is a hurdle for development and the reason for the general decline of tourism in Manipur despite having the potential to generate revenue inducing tourism industry with its beautiful natural resources and its vivacious people, said the convener of LOSGROM.
The five-member team that includes, besides the convener of LOSGROM, its co-conveners Ratan Luwang Cha and Khelen Thokchom and members GA Naocha and Rinku will be meeting the Prime Minister of India and Union Home Minister on December 29 or 30.