Northeast News | IMPHAL | Apr 3

North East Forum for Indigenous People (NEFIP), a collective forum to address the issues confronting religion was constituted during the three-day NE People’s Conference at City Convention Centre which began from April 1.

The forum unanimously nominated NingthoujaLancha as the convener of NEFIP. The forum shall have state coordinating units or state chapters which shall look after the coordinating activities with an objective to make the forum democratic and inclusive.

The conference also agreed to nominate three members each from each state as member of the Core committee, NEFIP. The conference also resolved to condemn and oppose anti northeast people policies of the Centre that has threatened the lives, resources, habitats and demography of the region. The forum firmly resolved to stand unambiguously clear to oppose the impending threat that has come from the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB), 2016.

The forum also unanimously resolved to support all the organisations in various states demanding the implementation of ILP system, NRC and other alike influx regulated legislations in their respective states.

Addressing media persons today, convener of MANPAC, YumanamchaDilip said the public meeting held on February 16 at Imphal had adopted the necessity of collective effort from the civil society organisations to strengthen the movement against CAB after which MANPAC toured different northeastern states to meet different organisations of the region.

The North East People’s Conference held from April 1 till April 3 had detailed discussion on CAB 2016 and took a firm decision against CAB and the step motherly treatment attitude of the Centre towards the NE people, said Dilip.

He also informed that the delegates present also expressed the importance of a collective platform to represent the voice of the NE region and to face the problem of existing human rights violations in the region, custodial killing, army atrocities and the threat of illegal immigrants.

The problems of illegal immigrants faced by states which have ILP system such as Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram and Nagaland were also discussed during the conference attended by more than 65 delegates from different parts of NE. After a deliberate discussion among the delegates, North East Forum for Indigenous People (NEFIP) was formed to deal with the common issues faced by the NE region. The aim and objective as well as the structure of the forum will be further discussed at Meghalaya with NingthoujaLancha as the convener.

Chairman of Confederation of Meghalaya Social Organisations (COMSO) Robert June Kharjahrin said, “in this present scenario when indigenous people of the region have been suppressed, the chance of survival will only be higher if we, indigenous people fight and oppose different forces collectively.”

Another representative of Meghalaya, PrajalDeori highlighted the importance of demanding national Register of Citizens (NRC) in the entire region as there is no concrete political solution to protect the entire northeast region. He also said that Six Schedule in itself has less power to protect the indigenous people as laws can also be reformed once the immigrants become the majority and holds the political power.

A delegate from Mizoram RuatlenaFanai said, as an indigenous people, NEFIP will come up with principles as per the international laws of UN declaration on the Rights of Indigenous People that have about 46 articles and UN Sustainable Development Cause.

Quoting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples he said, indigenous people and individual are free and equal with all other peoples and have the right to be free from any kind of discrimination in the exercise of their rights in particulars that is based on their indigenous origins or identity.

United Nations have prepared two UN Special rapporteurs where NE region can also table the rights in front of the world, he added. As majority sections have used the institution of law to suppress the people, NEFIP will act as a new platform to raise the voices of the people and the people also need more courage and aspirations to fulfil its demands, he asserted.

Chairman Committee of Alternative arrangement United Naga Council AsinpouGangmei said United Naga Council has become active supporter not only against CAB but issues confronting NE people. It is beginning of a journey for people to stand together, he noted.

~IFP

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