Even as the anti influx groups have criticized the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for playing double standard, BJP legislator from South Shillong, Sanbor Shullai has requested the chief minister, Conrad K Sangma to lead an all-party delegation to Delhi for demanding the Centre to immediately implement the inner line permit (ILP) in Meghalaya.
“If the chief minister can lead an all-party delegation I feel that will add more weight to our demand as all the 60 legislators are duty-bound to pursue the issue by meeting the Prime Minister and Union Home Minister,” Shullai told reporters on Saturday.
His statement came in the wake of the growing demand from the anti-influx groups that all 60 legislators should aggressively pursue the demand for implementation of ILP in Delhi.
Welcoming their suggestion, Shullai said, “It is a good suggestion. I also feel that all the three MPs of the state should also join hands with the 60 legislators to ensure that this long pending aspiration of the people of Meghalaya is fulfilled.”
“I have also discussed with the chief minister (when I met him the other day) on the need to call for an all-party meeting in this regard. It will be good if he calls a meeting next month,” the BJP MLA said.
“I agree with the NGOs as elected representatives, our duty is not only to sit in the chair but to take up issues concerning the state and its people and that going to Delhi should not only end up in seeking central schemes,” he stated.
Stating that it is the right for indigenous tribes to demand ILP, Shullai said the Centre has given ILP to other states in the Northeast region.
“However what concerns me as a legislator is that while the Centre has given ILP to Manipur but delays to give Meghalaya,” he said.
In view of this, Shullai informed that he has decided to personally follow up on this issue during his visit to Delhi next month.
“As a party MLA, I will follow up on this issue and ensure the Centre should give a clear cut reason whether they will consider the proposal or not,” he said.
“During my visit to Delhi, I will also follow up on various issues which include the demand for inclusion of Khasi and Garo languages in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution of India,” he added.
On the allegation that the BJP is playing double standard on the ILP issue, Shullai however said, “To say that I am with the BJP and I have forgotten the issues concerning the indigenous people is very wrong as the party is only a uniform.”
“Since I was an NGO leader till now, I have not backed out from supporting the demand for implementation of ILP in the state,” he said.
Asked, the BJP MLA said implementation of the ILP does not have any connection with the issue related to the transit movement of people from other states through Meghalaya.
“Transit movement will not be affected if ILP is implemented as there will be guidelines and rules put in place,” he asserted.