With growing demands from pressure groups for all 60 Meghalaya MLAs to go to New Delhi and press the central government to implement the Inner Line Permit (ILP) in the state, leader of the opposition and former Chief Minister, Dr Mukul Sangma of the Congress, said that the government must do more on the issue.
On December 19, 2019 the Meghalaya Assembly passed a unanimous resolution to urge the Centre to grant ILP to the state.
According to Dr Sangma, it is now the duty of the government to prevail upon the Indian government to ultimately say “yes”.
He also stated that the Congress, now in opposition, is not playing for the gallery by supporting ILP when it had rejected it while in power before the change of regime in 2018.
“We have demonstrated our conviction and our stand on the floor of the house. So we don’t have to be told what to do, as we know what to do as a political party and as responsible elected representatives,” Dr Sangma said.
While paying a one-day visit to Shillong last week, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said that ILP is a political decision and that the Centre has been doing everything it can to protect the indigenous tribes of Meghalaya.
Dr Sangma dismissed this today as a “diplomatic statement”.
“We only want whatever was assured in the house by the state government. They must aggressively follow it up and ensure that they prevail upon the Government of India to agree to what was proposed and adopted in the resolution,” the ex-CM added.