Communities pledge to eradicate poppy farming in Manipur
Imphal, Feb. 25 (EMN): In what could be termed as a rare and historic occasion, Manipur Chief Minister Nongthombam Biren Singh led the leaders and representatives of 33 different communities residing in the state in taking a collective pledge to work together towards complete destruction of illegal poppy cultivation and checking illicit drug businesses.
The pledge was taken during a convention under the banner of ‘All communities convention for a pledge against illegal poppy plantation’ at Bhagyachandra Open Air Theatre in Imphal today.
The convention was held after people responded to chief minister’s call to extend support and co-operation to ‘War on Drugs’ campaign by taking part in the destruction of poppy cultivations.
Leaders and representatives of Kharam Tribe Union, Purum Tribe Union, Koireng Tribe Union, Thadou Inpi, Manipuri Gorkha Association, Kom Tribe Union, Chiru Tribe Union, Thangal Tribe Union, Maram Union, Mao Council, Poumai Tribe Union, Zemei Tribe Union, Anal Tangpi, Lamkang Kaver Kupun, Monshang Tribe Union, Moyon Tribe Union, Aimol Tribe Union, Tarao Tribe Union, Hmar Inpi, Paite People Council, Simte Tribe Union, Zou Tribe Union, Mizo People Convention, Vaiphei People Council, Gangte Tribe Union, Tangkhul Mayar Ngala Long, Mate Tribe Union, Maring Uparup, Zeme Tribe Union, Rongmei Tribe Union, Inpui Tribe Union, Liangmai Tribe Union and Chothe Tribe Union took part in the pledge.
Speaking on the occasion, Singh stated that he was moved by the people’s overwhelming response to his appeal for a collective fight against drugs and poppy plantation. He stated that the convention was a historic event and would be remembered forever.
When he was elected to the Manipur Legislative Assembly for the first time in 2002, Singh stated that he moved a private member resolution to forgive and forget the past mistakes and live together harmoniously by all the communities of the state. After he became the chief minister, Singh added that ‘Go to Hills’ to bring equal opportunities and development was his first slogan.
Maintaining that drugs and intoxicants had taken many lives, Singh has sought a collective effort to uproot it from the society.
Singh also assured that the government would definitely give alternative livelihood to all the poppy growers. For this, he informed that required funds has been earmarked in the budget and additional assistance would also be sought from the centre.
“Needy poppy growers would be identified in consultation with the village chiefs to provide assistance through the DCs concerned under different government schemes,” he informed.
Stating that the present government has taken up various developmental works in the hills, Singh stated that there is no household in Kamjong headquarters which do not get tap water. Understanding people’s inconvenience, the government has started providing tap water in Tamenglong and Churachandpur district headquarters as well, Singh said.
Leaders of Thangal Union president, Mizo People Convention, Tangkhul Mayar Ngala Long and Joint Tribes Zeliangrong president also spoke at the convention wherein they vowed to extend full cooperation to the government’s ‘War on Drugs’ campaign.