Many scholars, writers and journalists have also suffered the brunt of detention and imprisonment apart from instilling fear on many, said PREPAK.
Proscribed PREPAK has come down heavily on the policies and practices of the state government and its efforts to silence freedom of expression.
In a press statement, the proscribed group’s Charge de’ Affairs, Publicity& Propaganda, Leibaak Ngaakpa Luwang stated that history is the witness to Kangleipak’s two thousand years old independent existence. After being a British Protectorate, Manipur regained its independence on August 14, 1947 and was never part of India, claimed PREPAK.
PREPAK stated that on September 21, 1949, Manipur was annexed after summoning Maharaja Bodhachandra to Shillong and thus Manipur became a part C State and later a Union Territory governed by a Chief Commissioner. On January 21, 1972, Manipur was made a State under India and since then the day has been observed as Statehood Day to “deceitfully suppress Manipur’s sovereignty”. On this occasion PREPAK requested the people to guard against the ongoing move to trap the people with lies.
On Freedom of Expression
The proscribed group said that when it comes to suppressing the freedom of expression, speech and writing, all governments are the same. Even if the government claims that there is no muzzling of the freedom of expression by banning media fraternity, most states are increasingly suppressing freedom to freely express themselves. Many scholars, writers and journalists have also suffered the brunt of detention and imprisonment in India apart from instilling fear, said PREPAK.
PREPAK also pointed that there has been standing orders to restrain teachers of colleges from publicly sharing their views and opinions on New Education Policy-2020. Not only this, there has also been official injunction on anyone writing books related to history without the screening to be executed by a committee appointed by the state government.
There are also instances of journalists who had been booked and detained under National Security Act and Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). Others had been summoned to police stations and threatened by interrogating them. “This amply demonstrates that what is given in Indian Constitution’s Article 19(1)(a) on right to freedom of speech and expression exists only on paper. This is just opposed to the tall claims by India that it is the world’s biggest democracy”, said PREPAK.
“So long as authorities imposes police rule on people in the name of fending freedom, this cannot be called true freedom and hence, Kangleipak is the prison house of the Kanglei people. The livelihood of the people and their freedom is not granted by the government. It is the right of a citizen to express his or her inner thoughts for collective good. However, if one looks at the current situation, the right to dissent as given in the Constitution of India to its citizens seems to have lost all meanings”, stated the proscribed outfit.
PREPAK said it is the duty of the government to let the people get all the rights guaranteed by the Constitution. But Kangleipak under India has not be seen development or welfare as the people are not getting their fundamental rights. Freedom cannot be exchanged with anything and fate related to freedom of its citizens can be saved by unwavering refusal to exchange it with anything. People cannot exist without the taste of democracy and when there is not freedom, there is no life, said PREPAK.
On Illegal Drugs
PREPAK said that the youth of Kangleipak are afflicted by the menace of drug addiction and illegal drugs trade by a few have continuously hampered their growth. This is a conspiracy by the state to cripple the Kanglei people. What the state does is to obey the command of the centre like the puppets. As part of suppressing the movement to regain the lost sovereignty of Kangleipak, the Union and State forces have used all their might even to the extent of closing down International border.
The proscribed group also pointed out that distribution of Urea fertilizer is controlled by the state but poor farmers are not availing the same fertilizers when there are instances of the same fertilizer being used for poppy cultivation in the hills. “There will be no problem at all if the state is fighting the drugs menace like it was fighting the armed political movements. What Kangleipak is witnessing now is not consumption of drugs but feeding the people with drugs and efforts are made not for stopping illegal drugs trade but providing protection to those responsible”, said PREPAK.
Even if India claims to be a nuclear power in the world, the country is still reeling under poverty ridden state of hunger, people without homes and millions of people without a slice of daily bread. Laws made are supposed to protect these people but the same law is in fact feeding the rich, claimed PREPAK.
On The Manipur Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act, 2014
In the name of saving the paddy fields of Manipur, the state brought in The Manipur Conservation of Paddy Land and Wetland Act, 2014. This act is not allowing poor peasants and famers to build homesteads in their lands but the same act is allowing the continuous establishment of schools, hospitals, brick fields, saw mills, stone crushers and other industries owned and controlled by high ranking officials and their rich cronies.
ICESCR (ICESCR), ICCPR (ICCPR), UDHR (UDHR) provided under the Indian Constitution and their provisions are supposed to support the efforts to build homes for the homeless. However, these remain mere lip-service, and instead, the homeless people’s homes are being destroyed by blaming them of breaking the law on allegations of encroachment without giving them a chance to file petition in a court of law, pointed out PREPAK.
The proscribed outfit said that all these things have befallen on people after becoming subservient to India’s rule and if the people wish to save themselves, they should participate collectively in the movement against colonial rule so as to usher in an era of developed and prosperous socialist Kangleipak.