Regressive society imminent sans ST shield, cautions RK Nimai

STAFF REPORTER IMPHAL, 28th Feb: Meetei/Meitei must be included in scheduled tribes list so to prevent the state from being overrun by outsiders and illegal migrants, as such a scenario would lower patriotism amongst the people and lead to disintegration of the society, retired IAS RK Nimai has stated.

He made the statement during a meeting with the ST Demand Committee and Coordinating Committee, which is seeking opinions of prominent citizens in connection with the demand for inclusion of Meetei/Meitei in ST list, on Wednesday.

Speaking at his Hijagang, Palace Compound residence here, Nimai noted that there is a huge difference between the 'tribal' that people know and the 'tribal' included in the schedule list.

Observing that inclusion of Meetei/Meitei in the ST list would not pose any problem to any community nor to the armed struggle for independence, he said that the only reason for inclusion in ST is to prevent dilution of the Meetei/Meitei community.

This community, he cautioned, is currently under threat of being extinct if no preventive measures were not taken up while there is still time.

RK Nimai further pointed out that Act East Policy, globalisation, migration and immigration have affected the state's demography drastically.

"If we are not included in the ST list as soon as possible, we would be soon forced out onto the roads and streets, as the day by day increasing number of illegal migrants and outsiders have the potential to take over the land", he added.

If people do not have a place to call home, patriotism will eventually die out, thereby resulting in disintegration of the society. Hence, it is important that Meetei/Meitei community be included in the ST list, Nimai asserted, while adding that the final decision must be left to the Centre.

He further remarked that no one needs to issue threats in this regard and also the state government must immediately forward a proposal to the Centre.

Noting that most of the issues prevailing in the state are interrelated with one another, RK Nimai maintained that all such issues would automatically disappear if a clear cut solution is brought about.

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