Stating that not everyone is supporting the idea of having railway in East Jaintia Hills but not everyone is opposing it too, Meghalaya Cabinet minister and United Democratic Party (UDP) legislator from Khliehriāt constituency Kyrmen Shylla on Friday said the representatives of the East Jaintia Hills will hold a consultative meeting with the local people of East Jaintia Hills to seek their consent with regards to the state government’s move to introduce railway lines in the district. The meeting is likely to be held in January, 2024.
Speaking to the media, Shylla asserted that any decision regarding the railway project’s implementation in East Jaiñtia Hills would only proceed with the consent of the local residents.
“We started discussing with our people, I believe other MLA also doing the same, especially Santa Merry Shylla. Not everyone supports the railway but not everyone is against it. So the best thing is that we should have a big meeting only with the local people where the people of East Jaintia Hills can give their views and comments. We are not so much in a hurry; we will see the best time and where we can bring all together all into confidence, so that we should talk and have open discussion,” Shylla said.
While asserting that the views of the majority of the people expressed during the consultative meeting will be informed to the state Government, the Khliehriāt MLA said, “Exactly the date and the time we haven’t fixed yet because it’s now the time for everyone Christmas, New Year and different festivals. For this we cannot put it within this year itself, it has to be hopefully the start of next year.”
“Here we are not looking at the political mileage for anybody either for NPP or UDP, my concern or our concern is the public, specially the public who will be getting the benefits and in that area where we want to implement railways, those people whether they accept it or not. Nothing should be for the mileage of any political party. There are few who oppose, but some oppose without any reason while some they don’t know why they support,” the UDP youth leader said.
The meeting will be organised by both the representatives of East Jaintia Hills.
“For this it’s our duty to convince the people and then take the outcome of the meeting and bring it to the notice of the state Government,” he added.