Home PR and Events Press Release TSA-GHQ allegation on setting up of ‘International Model Township’ near Moreh town

TSA-GHQ allegation on setting up of ‘International Model Township’ near Moreh town

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The Thadou Students’ Association, General Headquarters (TSA-GHQ) is deeply concerned that some elements within the community in cahoots with the Government of Manipur are unscrupulously carrying out a deceitful campaign for the government to take away tribal land in and around Haolenphai village, near Moreh, allegedly for setting up an ‘International Model Township’ against the interests and wishes of the community.

Given that Manipur government’s previous attempt to grab the land in the name of smart city had been thwarted with the exclusion of Haolenphai/Moreh from the list of smart cities across India that was announced in August 2015, the government is now apparently deploying some vested interests to make a reattempt to grab theland in the name of International Model Township or whatever it is called and also in the name of expansion of wildlife sanctuaries to tribal lands around Moreh.

It is most unfortunate that in sharp contradiction to their role and community expectation, leaders of some Moreh-based tribal organisations, namely the Hill Tribal Council and Kuki Students’ Organisation, Moreh used deceiving or coercive methods to obtain signatures of leaders of Kuki Chiefs Association, Moreh and some others to make it appear like they have consented to give the land away to the government on the 15th January, 2016. The truth, however, is that the honourable chief of Haolenphai and other villages and the villagers, in protest against the plan, rightly, and rightfully so, refused to sign the piece of paper that was going to deny them their rights to live in their own land.

We strongly condemn this act of coercion and deception and will never accept any agreement between any parties that is against the wishes and interests of the community. Together with the public and other tribal organisations, we will fight tooth and nail against such nefarious plots in order to protect tribal interests. Manipur government must stop manoeuvring to grab tribal lands and to undermine tribal interests. If the government is serious about its slogan of state integrity, it must have the political will to close the gap between the disadvantaged minority community and the dominant majority community by respecting the sentiments, cultures, history and rights of the tribals instead of dispossessing them of their lands and denying them their rights.

Over the decades before and after independence and becoming a part of the present day Manipur, the tribals have lost control over large chunks of our traditional lands and we cannot afford to lose more to become homeless and landless people in our own homeland.

TSA appeals to the organisations involved in the fake agreement to pull out of the anti-tribal game plan, but to respect the sentiments of the people and honour the very purpose of the formation or existence of their respective organisations. Or else, they will only invite the wrath of the people and be fittingly treated as anti-social elements.

We like to advise the Government of Manipur against manipulating the fake agreement, for such an agreement will be rendered null and void. The affected tribal community had sent out a strong and a clear message of outright protest against the previous attempt and any move by the government to forcibly grab the land will be resisted in the same manner and this will potentially lead to an unprecedented tribal uprising. We caution any relevant organisations against taking part in any plan that is potentially harmful to tribal interests.

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