IMPHAL, May 26: For holding election to the six District Councils in the hill districts of Manipur, the process of delimitation has already begun since May 24, and election schedule would be announced after completion of the delimitation within 45 days.
Announcing this while talking to some mediapersons today, Tribal Development Minister DD Thaisii said that the Government has now its political will of holding the election at the latest by December end.
The Minister informed that to ensure completion of the delimitation process within the schedule timing, Governor has appointed retired IAS officer Ch Birendrakumar as the Chairman of the Delimitation Commission/Election Commission and necessary work has already been started.
Along with appointment another senior MCS officer as the Secretary, the DCs and ADOs concerned wou-ld assisting in the process of delimitation, the Minister said, while disclosing that though the Commission may seek the opinions of NGOs and political leaders, they would not be allowed to involve directly in the delimitation process.
Pointing out that District Councils started function-ing after the Parliament pas- sed the District Council Act in 1971 but a committee called the 6th Schedule Demand Committee had raised objection to holding the ele-ction of the District Coun- cils until granting of the Sixth Schedule status in the hill districts, the Minister observed that subsequent to the insertion of a controversial clause ‘local area adjustment’ by the then Chief Minister RK Ranbir led to stalling of holding election to the District Cou-ncil for more than 20 years.
After the Govt of India demanded to know why the election to the District Cou-ncils had not been held and the failure of the State Govt to give a definition on the clause ‘local area adjustment’ made the hill people realised their loss in not holding the election. Thus, with the necessity of amen-ding the District Council Act, the Govt of Manipur introduced the Manipur Hill Areas Autonomous Distri-ct Council Bill, 2008 in the State Assembly.
But following detection of certain lapses in the main provisions,the Bill had to be withdrawn and an ordinance was promulgated, the Minister said.
The Minister explained that since the number of villages have increased manifold in between the intervening period of 1971 and the present day, necessity of delimitation has co-me about to find out which villages would be included under which Constituencies of the District Councils without which holding of the election to the District Councils may not be possible.
The Minister further informed that as oppose to the composition of District Councils in which there were 20 members including two nominees in 1971, after the election this time District Councils would have 26 members each. Among the 26 members, there would be one Chairman, one Vice Chairman and five Execu-tive members would per- form as a Council of Minister and the Councillors would be entrusted with carrying out certain minor works including developmental works. Implemen- tation of the major works, however, would depend on the State Government, the TD Minister said.