SHILLONG, Sept 19 – Government offices today remained paralysed due to the office picketing called by NGOs demanding implementation of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) system. However, the Meghalaya Government has ruled out implementing the travel permit, in a late night meeting on Wednesday.
After intense discussion amongst its constituents, the Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance II (MUA) coalition Government has said that it would not be possible for the State Government to implement the ILP in Meghalaya.
On the other hand, ten NGOs, fighting for the ILP, enforced an office picketing today paralysing both State and Central Government offices here in the State capital. Later in the evening a night road blockade would be enforced by the NGOs from 9 pm to 5 am tomorrow. A 12-hour State bandh has also been called from 5 am to 5 pm tomorrow. Due to the ongoing agitation the roads in the State capital had less traffic and have also affected business ahead of the festive season.
Chief Minister Mukul Sangma emerging from a meeting, which went late into the night on Wednesday, said that the Government would be implementing other legislations to fight influx and it would not be possible for the State to implement the ILP.
He said that the decision was taken unanimously amongst the 38 members of the MUA-II who attended the meeting. Legislators from the Congress, NCP and independents attended the meeting. It was decided that the legislators would now return to their respective constituencies and create awareness about the implications of the ILP, if introduced.
If necessary, they would also hold discussions with the members of the NGOs. Some of the members said that they had interactions with church leaders and other prominent members of the society and most are opposed to implementation of ILP.
Sangma meanwhile said that the State Government would try to enact a Tenancy Act and also introduce other measures to check influx. Some of these instruments to check influx would come into force by the end of this month.
“We are trying to appoint more Labour officers at the block level and also strengthen the Directorate of Infiltration. The Tenancy Act would further help in checking influx,” the Chief Minister said.
Meanwhile, the Nationalist People’s Party has criticised the Government for the present situation in the State, stating that bandhs have crippled normal life. The party has demanded that all students arrested y the Government be released immediately.