NSF urges CM to address State’s dilemmas

Highlights concerns from student welfare & backdoor appointments to illegal immigration & Aadhaar

DIMAPUR, MARCH 21 (MExN): The Naga Students’ Federation (NSF) met Nagaland Chief Minister, Neiphiu Rio today and apprised him of several concerns on behalf of the student community.


The NSF submitted a representation to the CM to highlight issues which are pending or are yet to be taken up by the government despite previous intimations.


One of the issues included delay in the distribution of free school uniforms and textbooks. The NSF informed that in almost all the schools there were serious delay in distribution of these items.


With regard to the Mid Day Meal scheme, the NSF stated some schools have not provided the meals even once for the previous academic session. “We are amazed to discover precisely a contradictory scenario and the schemes never reached the grassroots for whom the project was intended for,” the NSF stated.


The students’ body alleged that the amount sanctioned for the scheme “were siphoned off by some unscrupulous elements.” It demanded that disciplinary measures be initiated to penalize those responsible.


In this regard, the NSF urged the Nagaland CM to expedite the investigation process being undertaken by the State Vigilance Commission through Case No. R.C.-05/2016 and R.C.-9/2016 for investigation into irregularities/mismanagement of Mid Day Meal Scheme.


Another issue the NSF highlighted was the School Education departmental exam. It reminded the CM that the federation had appealed for selection of indigenous inhabitant applicants of the state on priority with regard to the exam held on September 2017. It stated the then School Education Minister had replied for consideration of only eligible applicants of the indigenous inhabitants of the State.


The NSF however lamented that as per the results “it appeared that candidates selected were against the aspiration and voice of the student community.” It therefore demanded that the selection of non-indigenous inhabitant applicants of the state be nullified and the waiting list of merit indigenous inhabitant applicants be considered for selection to the vacant posts.


The NSF also expressed concern that despite written assurance given by the government to disburse the total amount of post matric scholarship, there are still around 12,000 students yet to receive their due shares for the year 2016-2017. It asked the CM to take necessary action so as to enable for payment of the pending scholarship at the earliest.


The NSF meanwhile highlighted other issues not solely concerning students. One such was the Inner Line Permit (ILP). The NSF pointed to the influx of non-locals and illegal immigrants into the state and the lack of stringent implementation of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BERF) Act of 1873. The provisions of BERF Act 1873 are too old and many of its provisions are irrelevant in our present context, the NSF stated.


Having aired their concerns to the Chief Secretary in October 2017, the federation lamented that there has not been any response on the issue yet.


The NSF also took the opportunity to express concern at the Aadhaar Card/UID being made compulsory.


“The NSF considers the imposition of Aadhaar card/UID number as a big threat to Naga customary law and identity. It is nothing but a direct challenge of privacy threatening even the idea of Nagas right to self-determination. Imposing of such drastic nationalising policy upon the Nagas pending the final Indo-Naga solution is thus inimical to the process of Indo-Naga Peace Dialogue,” it stated.


The NSF further expressed intrigue to note that enforcement of Aadhaar is aggressively being pursued only in some selected states of Northeast India unlike in the other mainland Indian states “for the reasons best known to the Government of India.”


The federation also touched on the backdoor appointment issue and expressed concern at the road condition of the state. In line with the Office Memorandum (OM), dated June 6, 2016, the government should initiate enquiry into the departments violating the said OM and terminate the service of the backdoor appointees, it demanded.


Further, acknowledging the new government’s effort to undertake repairing and renovation of roads, the NSF asked that strict supervising of the works be carried out in order to enable quality workmanship so as to ensure quality construction of the roads. It meanwhile informed that NSF federating units along with student unions will monitor the process of the works being carried out.