Imphal: The All Tribal Students’ Union, Manipur (ATSUM), the apex tribal body in Manipur has announced it will organise a Tribal Solidarity March on May 3 in Manipur hill districts — Senapati, Ukhrul, Kangpokpi, Tamenglong, Churachandpur, Chandel, Tengnoupal.
The solidarity march themed, Come now let’s reason together is aimed against the demand for inclusion of Meitei/Meetei community of the State in the Scheduled Tribe (ST) list.
“And Whereas, the meeting of ATSUM dated 27th April 2023 while considering the pressing nature of the situation and as endorsed by the meeting of the tribal students’ organisations of Manipur dated 21-04-2023, resolved to organise the Tribal Solidarity March on 3rd May 2023 in all hill districts under the theme “Come now let us reason together”. The meeting also constitute a district level coordination team to facilitate the grand success of the proposed March in each hill district with the assigned responsibilities of (1) Coordinating with Apex Organisation of the concerned district (2) Mobilisation of resources (3) Mobilisation of participants (4) Effective coverage of the event in Media and (5) Other necessary arrangement required for the event,” said ATSUM in a memorandum issued on April 27.
In connection to the solidarity march, the Kuki Inpi Manipur has given its full support. KIM, while condemning the direction of the High Court Manipur to recommend Meitei/Meetei community for ST inclusion, said the directive was insensitive to the interests of the backward and marginalized Scheduled Tribe communities of Manipur.
United Naga Council which is the apex Naga civil body has also strongly condemned the inane order of the Manipur High Court of March 27 last.
It may be also noted that the ATSUM had demanded that delimitation exercise should be carried out in the state of Manipur at the earliest in March 2023. The sub-committee comprising of representatives from the All Naga Students’ Association, Manipur (ANSAM), the Kuki Students’ Organisation (KSO) and the ATSUM deliberated on the issue in which serious concerns were raised as to why the Election Commission of India fails to conduct delimitation in the state of Manipur and why the state government is silent on the matter. “This is akin to violation of the fundamental rights under Article 14 of the Constitution of India and as such the ATSUM demands that delimitation exercise may be carried out in the state of Manipur at the earliest,” the apex tribal student body of Manipur demanded.