Meghalaya: HNLC accuses police of instigating public leading to assault on Agnes Kharshiing

Meghalaya: HNLC accuses police of instigating public leading to assault on Agnes Kharshiing

By Our Reporter | Shillong | December 2, 2018

The proscribed Hynniewtrep National Liberation Council (HNLC) has alleged that it was the police department who had instigated the public to assault RTI activist, Agnes Kharshiing because she was trying to monitor the case of illegal mining.

"She was a victim and made into a scapegoat of the illegal mining racket. Everyone in the state knows that right from the coal suppliers, police, politicians and bureaucrats is involved in illegal coal mining. Had it been legal, the state would have earned revenue in millions thereby uplifting the economy of the state as well as its people. It is time for the state machineries to take a decision into this matter and once and for all a lift the ban on coal mining," HNLC publicity secretary, Sainkupar Nongtraw said in a statement issued on Dec 2.

He also said that the rat hole mining has brought about poverty, economic downfall and disunity among the people and they shall be compelled to take law into their own hands. T

"The blanket ban on rat hole mining in the state, enforced by the Centre has created and given birth to a lot of problems, especially to the poorer sections who were totally dependent in the coal trade. The ban will not affect the millionaires but it has become a nightmare for the poor. Hundreds of school going children had to abandon their studies, hundreds and thousands of the people are not being able to feed themselves nor their children," Nongtraw observed. He said that this is total injustice and a mockery of the power of the state and its people.

The HNLC publicity secretary said that if the NGT has the power to put a stop to this trade then it should also have the power to open up other employment avenues for the poor. "Snatching away the livelihood is easy but sustaining the poor is the most difficult task. When a man sees his child in hunger, he does not think of anything else but to feed his child, be it by legal or illegal means. In 2019 the ban will complete six years. In these six years thousands have suffered. Our state had suffered an economic downfall and day by day it is worsening. We have tourism potentials but the tourism department is working at snails pace," Nongtraw said.

He further said that the Indian constitution is federal in form but unitary in spirit. "For example all the underground deposits, ores, minerals, rivers, forests are state subjects but by default everything comes under the union government. Here we witness a lot of political oppression and economic exploitation at the hands of the Indian government," HNLC publicity secretary said.

He said that this is a harsh reality that India with a population of 1.35 billion people has only 29 states. "Whereby states should have been more to cater to the needs of over one billion. Indian states do not have the power to propose any kind of Amendment, and it has to depend upon the mercy of the parliament. Even the Governors are just mere agents of the central government and they cannot act as heads of state," Nongtraw said.

HNLC publicity secretary said that every thinking Indian knows that India has attained freedom. "But  it's states are totally dependent upon the dictatorship of the Centre. As long as the Centre wants its states to function as puppets, we do not see any change. This creates a breeding ground of revolutions into the minds of the masses," he said.

Delay in the setting up of entry and exit point for regulating illegal immigration

He said that they are also concerned about the demands of all the 13 pressure groups who are of the view to set up Entry exit Points to regulate the entry of illegal immigrants into the state. "It has been several years but the government is yet to take up any major steps. We had the hope that the present government under the leadership of Conrad Sangma shall be able to fulfill the demands of the pressure groups, but there is no sign of any progress. If entry exit points are not done at the earliest then our state shall also become another Tripura, full of illegal immigrants who would change the demography of the state," HNLC publicity secretary said. He also said that the Chief Minister should be farsighted and take concrete steps to protect our land and the identity of its people. If things go on this way then very soon we shall witness illegal immigrants everywhere in the state in the assembly, secretariat, business etc.

"It's time for our politicians to wake up from slumber before our state gets a new name 'Bangalaya'," Nongtraw added.

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