Post Mortem

Rejoinder to ‘Delimitation: Supreme Court gave last chance to reply’

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 11/12/2020 1:12:53 PM IST

 There is yet again a growing apprehension that, the ongoing delimitation process currently underway may be sabotaged and become a dead duck and meet the same fate as the delimitation of 2008 with a presidential notification on the 8th February 2008, on the ground that it would cost tribal disharmony and ongoing peace talks. Delimitation in Nagaland happened only in the year 1964 and 1974. It is not a household word as people keep themselves busy and worried on life intricacies and problems. It is pertinent, therefore to bring the word and its meaning for the consummation of general people. Unless we Nagas specially the intellectual, politicians and students wake up from deep slumber, the strength of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly will never grow. Delimitation literally means the act/the process of fixing limits or boundaries of territorial constituencies/assembly of a country/state to represent changes in population. Article 82 enacts the delimitation after every census. Under Article 172, states get divided into territorial constituencies after delimitation act. Following the delimitation act commissions are constituted by parliament. There have been five delimitation acts after 1971 census followed by 1981, 1991, 2001 and 2011. The Indian parliament enacted delimitation law after 2001 census following which the delimitation commission was appointed in the year 2002. The process was completed by January 2008. It needed only centre’s notification for approval and implementation. What happen next has been described above in regard to its cancellation. 

Prominent personalities against the motion for delimitation that led to the cancellation and the part they played, may preferably be mentioned here for general awareness and caution. Dr. Mandretta was appointed as an adviser to the delimitation commission from 2002-2008 till the exit of delimitation process. Nagaland as the second oldest state after Assam was included into delimitation of the four north eastern states namely – Assam, Nagaland, Manipur and Arunachal Pradesh. Dr. Manderatta as an advisor opined that there was an apprehension over the use of 2001 census and also the negative impact over the centre’s move to club the northeastern states with Jammu and Kashmir by taking advantage in the backdrop of unrest in the region. It is an irony that Dr. Manderatta former advisor venomous ploy must have contributed a lot to the cancellation of 2008 delimitation. He has now resurfaced again with his usual hatred against the delimitation over the centre’s order setting up a delimitation commission on the 6th March 2020 for Nagaland. He has called the notification as evolution of representation of the people’s act 1950. He has invoked again the presidential notification of 8th February 2002 but he has only tugged out carcass because the presidential notification on 28th February 2020 has resented the earlier order. It is futile to dwell further on the legal intricacies and legal shenanigans. It is sad not only the like of prominent personality like Dr. Manderatta, it is a woe too strong to have opponents from Supreme Court advocating against the delimitation. It is suffice to say here that the hidden secrets that the enemies of the downtrodden Nagas will one day tumble out but that also for the posterity to declare this if this issue becomes a legal matter to fight with in the court. This referred to the eminent Supreme Court judges comprising of chief Justice Bobde, Justice A.S. Bopana and Justice V. Rama Subramaniam who has tagged in an observation to the earlier petition against the delimitation act of 2008. If such prominent personalities as a representative of the Supreme Court are inclined to disfavor the delimitation on the ground of law and order, disturbance to tribal equilibrium and ongoing peace talk. It is hoped that they have passed this observation simply for the sake of a casual rhetoric and a comment. It is worthwhile again to mention the observation and stiff opposition of chief minister of Manipur Shri. Biren Singh who object to the use of 2001 census on the ground describe above.

It may humbly be cautioned against those stakeholders whose interest is to declare a cancellation of the center’s order for delimitation that should this process become a dead duck like the previous one their secret and the part they played will be most vigorously investigated. To support and to substantiate the arguments laid down in the shortest representation Nagaland population extract are enclosed herewith in annexures.  The annexures are by themselves self explanatory. All fact and figures represented in the letter and annexures are true to the best of my knowledge. And I hold responsible should it be necessary. It is appeal to the general Naga to see and check for themselves the facts and figure as they are all in the public domain. 

Mhonyimo Humtsoe, 

social activist and senior citizen, Wokha

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