Following the publication of the final draft National Register of Citizens (NRC) recently, the United Democratic Party, an ally of the NPP-led Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) Government on Tuesday had a discussion on the issue and agreed to form a panel that would suggest “realistic, practical and comprehensive” mechanisms which can help safeguard and control the problem of influx and illegal immigration in the State.
At its central executive committee meeting of the UDP, chaired by its president and Assembly Speaker, Donkupar Roy, the party leaders from across the State discussed at length the need to update the NRC in the State. They also discussed over the apprehensions in the wake of the publication of the final draft NRC in Assam on July 30, where over 40 lakh persons have been excluded from the list.
They also discussed preparations for the by-elections to Ranikor Assembly seat where the party has put up Pius Marweiñ as its candidate besides by-polls to to South Tura Assembly constituency where it has supported NPP candidate and Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma.
After the meeting, UDP general secretary Jemino Mawthoh told reporters that the party’s panel would conduct an in-depth study on influx and illegal immigration problem, and propose “realistic, practical and comprehensive” mechanisms that can safeguard the State and control the problem.
The panel would also seek views from party workers and other stakeholders before submitting a proposal to the State Government.
On Monday, Deputy Chief Minister and NPP leader Prestone Tynsong said that the State Government was open to the idea of discussing the need to carry out the NRC update process in the State.
Mawthoh too said that the UDP was open to the NRC idea, and the issue would be taken up with all MDA partners.
On the Inner Line Permit demand in the State, Mawthoh said that the UDP was yet to discuss the merits and demerits of ILP, adding that the panel would discuss and bring out the best mechanism which may be better than ILP.
Meanwhile, the meeting decided that the party should campaign aggressively for its candidate to ensure victory in the upcoming by-election to Ranikor constituency to be held on August 23 along with the by-election to the South Tura constituency.
The UDP candidate is fighting with NPP candidate Martin M Danggo in Ranikor, but in South Tura, the UDP supported the candidature of the Chief Minister.
To a question that the opposition Congress is supporting the UDP candidate in Ranikor, Mawthoh denying it said that the Congress has its own battle and wants to ensure the defeat of Danggo from Ranikor.
Danggo, the former Assembly Speaker and five-time MLA, resigned as Congress MLA in June this year and joined the NPP after the creation of Ranikor Civil Sub-division.
The UDP also constituted a State election committee headed by party president to prepare for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. All MLAs, members of district councils, district presidents of the party and other leaders are members of the State election committee.
Mawthoh said that the party would also have an understanding with the Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) for the upcoming elections to the district councils in Khasi hills.