Inner line permit regime extended to Manipur and Nagaland's Dimapur; order expected to quell protests against Citizenship Bill in northeastern states

  • The President of India signed an order on Wednesday, extending the Inner Line Permit to Manipur, thus creating a provision for the state from being excluded from the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2019

  • The Bill, which was passed in the Lok Sabha, and is being debated in Rajya Sabha, has sparked protests in the North East along with Manipur

  • Dimapur in Nagaland, which was excluded from the ILP, has also been included into the regime

  • To visit the ILP-regime states, outsiders, including people from other states of the country, need to take permission

The Home Ministry on Wednesday has extended the Inner Line Permit to Manipur, thus creating a provision for the state from being excluded from the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill 2019, which has sparked protests in the northeastern states. Nagaland's Dimapur, which was excluded from the ILP, has also been included into the regime.

The ILP regime requires anyone visiting the notified areas to register themselves if they are to spend more than 24 hours in there.

President of India Ram Nath Kovind signed the order in this effect on Wednesday.

The notification is likely to allay fears of the people of the northeastern state about contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019, especially Manipur, which has seen protests over the bill after the Lok Sabha passed the Citizenship (Amendment) Bil 2019, creating fears that outsiders, mostly Bangladeshis, would infiltrate and settle in the region.

 Inner line permit regime extended to Manipur and Nagalands Dimapur; order expected to quell protests against Citizenship Bill in northeastern states

Representational image. Reuters

To visit the ILP-regime states, outsiders, including people from other states of the country, need to take permission. It also offers protection for the locals with regards to lands, jobs and other facilities.

Manipur is the fourth state after Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram where the ILP regime is applicable.

The ILP regime is applicable under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation, 1873. In terms of Section 2 of the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulations, 1873, citizens of other states require ILP for visiting these three states.

ILP

The main objective of the ILP system is to prevent settlement of other Indian nationals in the notified states in order to protect the indigenous population.

There have been widespread protests in the Northeastern region against the bill following which Union Home Minister Amit Shah had announced that the proposed law will not be applicable in ILP regime states and areas governed under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution.

Under the Sixth Schedule of the Constitution, autonomous councils and districts were created in certain tribal areas in Assam, Meghalaya and Tripura. The autonomous councils and districts enjoy certain executive and legislative powers.

While introducing the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2019 in the Lok Sabha on Monday, Shah had said the ILP would be extended to Manipur. He had also said order in this regard would be issued before the proposed legislation is notified.

According to the bill, members of Hindu, Sikh, Buddhist, Jain, Parsi and Christian communities, who have come from Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan, till December 31, 2014 facing religious persecution there, will not be treated as illegal immigrants but given Indian citizenship.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Dec 11, 2019 19:23:17 IST