The Meghalaya Assembly on Thursday adopted a resolution for implementing the Inner Line Permit (ILP) regime in the state, which will impose restrictions on the entry and movement of ‘outsiders’ in the hill state.
“Thanking all the legislators from ruling and the opposition bench for articulating and reciprocating the aspirations of the people of the State, Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma said that the Government will urge upon the centre to include Meghalaya in the preamble of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulations, 1873,” a statement from the chief minister’s office said.
“It is important to note that this (resolution on ILP) is nobody’s victory or nobody’s loss, we are all in it together for the interest of the people,” Sangma said.
“We put on record our appreciation and effort by different political parties, stakeholders, and the citizens of the state to ensure that we move in a positive manner to safeguard and protect the rights of the people and the state.”
The ILP is a special permit that is required by “outsiders” from other regions of India to enter the states of Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram. The ILP, which can be received after applying either online or physically, states the dates of travel and also specifies the particular areas in the state which the ILP holder can travel to.
It is pertinent to note that the new citizenship law says “nothing in this section shall apply to tribal areas of Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram or Tripura as included in the Sixth Schedule to the Constitution and the area covered under ‘The Inter Line’ notified under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873”.
Home Minister Amit Shah had announced recently that Manipur will now come under the ILP regime and hence be exempted from the provisions of the the new law.
Meghalaya may not have had an ILP regime but three Autonomous District Councils under Sixth Schedule cover practically the entire state. In November, the Meghalaya Cabinet approved amendments to the Meghalaya Residents Safety and Security Act (MRSSA), 2016, which will lead to laws that require non-resident visitors to register themselves. The move came in the backdrop of demands for an ILP-like regime.