The Nagaland Village Councils (Fourth Amendment) Bill 2009 was introduced in the State Legislative Assembly on Thursday by parliamentary secretary Law and Justice, tourism, Art and Culture, Yitachu.
NLA Speaker Kiyanilie Peseyie informed that the consideration and passing of the bill would be taken up on July 11. A copy of the bill which was made available to the media mentioned about the change in nomenclature of the Nagaland Village Councils Act, 1978 to Nagaland Village and Tribal Councils Act 1978. The amendment act included insertion of certain sections and sub sections, change of words and deletion and renumbering of some sections.
The amendment act was intended to give legal status to the various tribal councils or Hohos which are functioning in the state and also to extend financial assistance without making it obligatory. It aimed at giving recognition to the existing tribal councils and Hohos which have not been given statutory recognition in spite of specific mention made in the 16 Point Agreement of 1960.
The amended act stated that “tribal councils” in section 2 (t) denoted the various tribal councils, hohos, unions, organizations, existing in Nagaland and being constituted by the various tribes in accordance with their respective traditions, customary practices and usages. An insertion in section 9 (3) in the principal act denoted the right of the State Government to remove chairman of a village council from his office if the chairman ceases to be a member of the village or if he resigns from chairmanship of the village on his own volition, and when a “no-confidence motion” was moved and passed by the majority of the village council members present and voting. Insertion of new sections 23 to 27 in the principal act stated that there might be a tribal council for every recognized Naga tribe and also one or more apex tribal council (s) comprising the federation or union of two or more tribal councils; wherein these tribal councils would constitute its composition, tenure and method as per the traditions, customary practices and usages of the tribes concerned.
The duty of the tribal councilor apex tribal council would be to submit the names and addresses of its office bearers to the DC of the district concerned and to the Home Department. The tribal councils shall also assist the State Government and its various agencies in the matter of maintenance of law and order, peace and communal/tribal harmony and settle disputes in the society. It was also stated that the tribal councils shall be legitimated with financial assistance or any other assistance, where it was likely that the State Government might extend approximate estimated expenditure of recurring Rs.50 lakhs per annum from the consolidated fund of the state.
Other changes in the act included substitution of the words “area council” by “tribal council,” deletion of sections 23 to 50 of the principal act, deletion of the word “area council” under section 30 of the amended act and renumbering of sections 51 to section 54 as sections 28 to 31 respectively.