CSOs oppose delimitation exercise in Manipur

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Imphal, 20th Dec: A one-day discourse hosted by five civil society organisations (CSOs) in Imphal on Sunday resolved to oppose the proposed delimitation exercise in Manipur based on ‘incorrect’ 2001 and 2011 census reports.

Delimitation Commission of India is in the process of carrying out a delimitation exercise in Manipur based on the controversial 2001 census report.

The commission, in a notification issued on February 28, 2020, stated that the delimitation and readjustment exercise is to be taken up based on census 2001 under Delimitation Act, 2002.
Many civil society organisations based in the state have been opposing the proposed delimitation exercise based on the disputed 2001 census report while pointing out the errors in the census report with abnormal growth in some subdivisions of hill districts.

A ‘one-day discourse on inaccurate census data and demographic imbalance in Manipur’ held in Imphal on Sunday deliberated the issue once again.

Five CSOs – ACOAM-Lup, HERICOUN, LIPUL, UPF and UNACSU – hosted the discourse which was moderated by W Nabakumar, a retired professor of the Manipur University.

After resource persons presented their views on the possible future consequences if the delimitation was carried out based on the disputed census report, the discourse resolved to oppose the proposed delimitation based on 2001 or 2011 census reports.
The resource persons of the discourse claimed that errors in the census reports were scientifically proved and as such the delimitation should not be carried out based on such incorrect population data.

It will not only create demographic imbalance but miss the objective of the delimitation exercise proportional representation, the resource persons observed.

The Manipur government should set up the state population commission immediately and steps should be taken up for effective functioning of the commission so that the possible demographic imbalance in the state is checked.

The discourse further resolved to build up a mass movement if the state government fails to take up the necessary steps to set up the state population commission and to press the Centre not to carry out the delimitation exercise based on a disputed census report.

Earlier, talking on the sideline of the discourse, HERICOUN president Longjam Ratan claimed that many CSOs and almost all the political parties having offices in the state have registered their strong objections to carrying out of the proposed delimitation based on disputed census reports.

Despite strong oppositions, the Centre remained silent without which has prompted the five CSOs to bring out the issue once again.

Many CSOs and political parties have submitted memorandums to the pertinent authorities of the Central government but there has been no response from the Centre till date.

He said that errors in the 2001 and 2011 census reports were accepted by all and if the delimitation exercise was carried out in these incorrect census data, it will create a demographic imbalance besides not meeting the objective “proportional representation” of the delimitation.

He said that resource persons and many experts who participated in today’s discourse suggested delimitation exercise after the 2031 census report.