UADC censures ouster of ADC members

UKHRUL,13th Sep: A one-day session of Ukhrul Autonomous District Council (UADC) House was unanimously adjourned sine die as a mark of protest against what it termed as 'forcible eviction' of elected ADC members and 'continued ill- treatment' of the district councils by the state government, on Thursday.

Briefing media persons in the presence of executive members and other councillors at the district ADC complex at Phungreitang after adjournment of the session, UADC chairman K Dickson and spokesperson V Paothing stated that the members unanimously resolved to adjourn the House sine die to register their strong protest against the 'humiliation' of six elected ADC members caused by the forcible eviction and the endless exploitation of the ADCs by the state government.

"By adjourning the House, we want to convey a strong message to the government that the Ukhrul ADC is deeply upset by the cold attitude of the government towards the district councils," Dickson said, adding to the effect that the councils will not take it lying down if the government does not heed their pleas for early devolution of power for efficient local self-governance in the hill districts.

"The current episode of forcing out the six elected ADC members from Ukhrul and Tamenglong is an ample proof that the state government does not recognise the existence of ADC as an organ of the governance," he continued.

Recalling that the incumbent ADC members from the six hill districts had repeatedly urged the government to allot them quarters at the ADC Guest House at Chingmeirong since 2015, he pointed out that despite this, the government has not been able to evict the illegal occupants of the guest house.

Further, venting his dismay at the continued dismissal of the district councils, Dickson contended that the government has deliberately ignored the presence of ADC in all government development projects or programmes, be it 'Go to Village' events or opening of new substation offices or others in their own constituencies.

"Though the new 33/11 KV power sub-station was inaugurated by the power minister on 11 March this year at Nungbi Khullen which is my native village, the government still ignored my presence as ADC chairman as is evident in the erection of the monolith," he rued.

Conveying the same sentiments, spokesperson Paothing said that while occupying the sports complex is illegal, allowing unauthorised persons to occupy at the ADC Guest House is no different, and urged the government to allot proper quarters to all the incumbent ADC members at the Council Bhavan immediately. Describing the eviction episode as only a tip of the iceberg, Paothing said that there hordes of instances of discrimination against the district councils.

"These are all a fallout of continued suppression of devolution process of the district councils by the government, which have resulted in acute deficiencies in its executive power, funds etc," he noted, and urged the government to do the needful to grant autonomy to the ADCs on priority basis.

At the same time, Paothing also urged the government to complete the construction of the new Ukhrul ADC administrative block in the district headquarters town, stating that the work progress has been dragging on for almost 10 years since it commenced back in 2010. He also expressed discontentment with the TA&H minister and HAC chairman for their alleged lack of concerns for the district councils.

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