Pro-Inner Line Permit (ILP) groups under the banner of Confederation of Meghalaya Social Organizations (CoMSO) on Thursday sought to know the status of proposed amendment of the Meghalaya Residents Safety and Security Act (MRSSA), 2016 following their demand to incorporate provisions of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR), 1873 into the Act.
“The deputy chief minister informed us that the exercise to amendment the MRSSA, 2016 is in the final stage and it may complete within this month,” CoMSO chairman, Robertjune Kharjahrin said after a delegation of CoMSO met Deputy Chief Minister, Prestone Tynsong.
Tynsong said that the matter would be taken to the Cabinet for approval.
Kharjahrin said that the MRSSA, 2016 would be opposed of provisions of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR), 1873 are not incorporated.
The MRSSA was passed by the Meghalaya Assembly in 2016 which facilitated setting up of entry/exit points as part of the government’s move to implement comprehensive mechanisms to deal with the issue of influx and illegal immigration.
Kharjahrin said that setting up of entry-exit points to check influx would be of no meaning if the MRSSA is not strong.
He said that the CoMSO has submitted few suggestions on the need to incorporate relevant sections of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR), 1873 while amending the Act.
It demanded from the Meghalaya government to include Section 3 and 4 of the BEFR, 1873, which mandated the need for outsiders to obtain permit before entering the state, failing which action will be taken against them.
CoMSO also asked the government to incorporate section 7 of the BEFR to prevent acquisition of land by non-indigenous people and to amend the Constitution (Schedule Tribe) Order, 1950 since different tribes of the North Eastern region were also included in the list.
Kharjahrin said that CoMSO would pressurize the state government to amend the Constitution (Schedule Tribe) Order, 1950 to ensure that Khasi, Jaiñtia and Garo tribes are included in the ST list since Meghalaya has not corrected the anomaly even after Meghalaya was no longer part of Assam.
“Many states in the Northeast were once part of Assam, and the ST list must have been copied from Assam without making any changes,” he observed.