Assurances after assurances, meetings after meetings, yet no solution till now. Khasis living particularly in Assam have been demanding from the Assam government for constituting a Khasi Jaintia development council.
The Khasi-Jaintia Development Council Demand Committee (KJDCDC) on Wednesday sought the intervention of the chief minister Conrad K Sangma for the creation of the Khasi-Jaintia Development Council in the state of Assam.
A delegation of KJDCDC and Khasi Students Union (KSU) also met and handed a memorandum to Sangma in his office chamber on Wednesday.
“(We) humbly request your honour to sympathetically look into this matter and initiate immediate measures with your counterpart state Chief Minister of Assam Sarbananda Sonowal as to consider our legitimate top-most priority demand for…constituting and creating of Khasi-Jaintia Development Council, in the state of Assam,” KJDCDC president Sebastine Pakyntein said in the memorandum.
He said this in the greater interest of the vulnerable indigenous Khasi-Jaintia tribes living in the state of Assam especially in the Barak valley region (South Assam) where its population is more than 1.70 lakhs with more than 375 villages.
Pakyntein said the demand for the creation of Khasi Jaintia Development Council in Assam has been taken up by the previous Congress Government and the same has also been placed at the Assam state-level Cabinet Sub-Committee held on January 7, 2015.
He said the Ministry of Tribal Affairs (C&LM-I Division) on December 15, 2014, had directed the then Commissioner & Secretary Department of Welfare Plain Tribes and Backward Classes (WPT&BC), Govt of Assam, Dispur to take appropriate action for the creation of the Khasi-Jaintia Development Council.
“But the then state government has turned their deaf ears to our longstanding legitimate demands in addressing and promoting our socio-economic, education, ethnic and cultural grievances to provide maximum participation in advancement within the framework of the Constitution of India,” Pakyntein said.
According to him, despite having all the historical primitive trades’ characteristic and traditional customary practices that existed since the 18th century till date, the tribe/community is still being neglected, deprived for which our existence was indeed very deplorable, pitiable and at sub-standard conditions, lacking behind from many basic amenities of livelihood, where developmental schemes and cultural upliftment hardly or rarely is being benefited by our tribe/community.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, the KJDCDC president informed that the chief minister has assured the delegation to take up the matter. He also said that the delegation would also meet the chief minister of Assam requesting for his intervention into the matter.