Amit Shah’s refusal to hold discussions with members of the Meghalaya government and pressure groups on the subject of the Inner Line Permit (ILP) has drawn further sharp reactions from the state Congress Party.
Yesterday Shillong MP Vincent Pala criticized the Union Home Minister for only receiving memorandums and posing for photographs with the government and NGOs on his one-day visit to Shillong on Saturday. Today it was the turn of Secretary of the Meghalaya Congress, Bajop Pyngrope, to describe Shah’s treatment as an insult.
“We clearly remember when our MDCs, who are political representatives of the tribal people of our state, went down to New Delhi to meet him against the Citizenship Amendment Act, Amit Shah insulted us in his chamber by not saying even a single word to us,” he told Highland Post.
During that visit all the talking was done by Assam minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who, like Shah, is a member of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
“If a Union minister can insult our elected representatives in such a way, how can one expect Shah to listen to NGOs, civil society, etc?” Pyngrope said.
Shah “doesn’t care much about Meghalaya” because the state sends only two MPs to the lower house of Parliament, he added.
“We have now seen how the BJP is unlike the Congress when it was in power at the Centre as it (Congress) respected Meghalayans so much that it gave the late Ripple Kyndiah, Vincent Pala and Agatha Sangma ministerial posts. Now we don’t even have one Union minister from our state in the Centre because they don’t respect us,” Pyngrope said while criticizing Shah for having plenty of time to attend many gatherings in Assam but no time at all for the people of Meghalaya.
Stating that the public has to take note and understand the BJP lack of respect for the sentiments of the people, he said the BJP should stop boasting that they will field candidates and win more seats in the 2023 state elections because people will always reject the BJP in Meghalaya.
“If the BJP is not interested to give us ILP and its is least bother about the sentiments of minorities and it’s high time that the state implements the MRSSA (Meghalaya Residents Safety and Security Act) in letter and spirit and formulate other strong mechanisms to control influx in Meghalaya,” he added.