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Northeast lawmakers in rescue act
Shillong, Dec 22 (AGENCIES):
Published on 22 Dec. 2009 11:58 PM IST
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The meeting of the Northeast Region Commonwealth Parliamentary Association scheduled for next year would discuss methods to combat terror to facilitate the progress of the region, Meghalaya Speaker Charles Pyngrope said Monday. The two-day meeting, beginning January 29, here would be inaugurated by Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar, he added. Besides representatives from Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, the Speakers of the other northeastern states, including Sikkim, will participate in the meeting. All 60 MLAs of host state Meghalaya will also participate. Five MLAs each of the other northeastern states, including Sikkim, will be invited to the meeting. The chief ministers of the northeastern states and the MPs from the region will also be invited as special guests. Pyngrope told this correspondent that the MPs and the MLAs would present papers on Effects of Terrorism in the Northeast, suggesting their respective government’s effective ways to tackle violence perpetrated by insurgent groups in the region. “We as law makers are very much concerned over the growing menace of insurgent activities in the region and hope that this forum will provide practical inputs to the government to check militancy,” he said. Except Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram, the two relatively peaceful states, the Northeast as a whole is plagued by militancy. Though the Centre had entered into ceasefire with many militant groups in the region, a lasting peace is yet to be achieved. While the NSCN, the prominent militant outfit, currently under ceasefire is active in Nagaland, there are more than a dozen militant outfits active in Manipur. Assam too is plagued by extortion and kidnap being carried out by various militant groups despite the recent arrest of top Ulfa leaders. The use of the Garo hills corridor by Northeast militants especially Ulfa and the NDFB to sneak into Bangladesh is also a cause of concern for Meghalaya. According to Pyngrope, this was perhaps the first time in recent times that legislators would collectively discuss the ill effects of militancy in the region. He said development of the Northeast had been affected by militancy and a legislators’ forum like the association would be able to adopt some concrete measures to tackle the prevailing situation.

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