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Meghalaya, Manipur MPs make midnight debut in Lok Sabha, comes down heavily on Centre

First Published: 2nd July, 2024 14:16 IST

Inner Manipur MP Bimol Akoijam and Shillong MP Ricky AJ Syngkon in their maiden entry as MPs spoke about the most important issues in their respective state.

The newly elected MPs from Manipur and Meghalaya made their debut in Parliament just a few minutes before midnight yesterday with some fiery speeches highlighting the issues of Manipur.

Inner Manipur MP Angomcha Bimol Akoijam and Shillong MP from VPP party, Ricky AJ Syngkon in their maiden entry as MPs spoke about the most important issues in their respective state.

While Akoijam, a former professor at the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi and a first time politician and Congress MP, made an emotional yet powerful speech about the plight of the children, men and women languishing at the relief camps across Manipur where tension prevails even after a year of violence that started on May 4, 2023, Syngkon spoke about the issues of the people of Meghalaya living along the Assam and Bangladesh borders.

“Keep your hands on your heart and think about the 60,000 people who are languishing in relief camps and those mothers, those widows, think of them. Only then we will understand what this tragedy means. Mr Chairman, the hurt, the anger has thrown a nobody like me to be part of this temple of democracy. Think about the pain. You can hear the anxiety, anguish and pain in my voice, please go and see the 60,000 people languishing in the relief camps. I will keep quite the moment Prime Minister speaks and the nationalist party says that Manipur is a part of India and we care for the people of that state,” Akoijam said in his maiden speech.

VPP MP from Shillong, Ricky AJ Syngkon, also a first time MP, in his maiden address to the Lok Sabha, highlighted Meghalaya’s border disputes with Assam as well as Bangladesh. Ricky said people living in the border areas do not feel safe despite the Centre’s claim of peace in the Northeast.

In his speech, Syngkon stated, “While mentioning the lasting peace in the Northeast, as spelled out in the Presidential address, I would like to remind the government of the day and also the government of the past led by the Congress, that our people, my people living especially in the border with Assam and the border with Bangladesh, I tell you till today, they do not feel safe at all. They feel very threatened and what is even more sad is that the lands have been taken away from them and they have lost their livelihood. Why, because of the failure of the subsequent governments to settle this dispute which has been there for many many years. We talk about the development of the nation, which is dependent on the development of the states. Now, how can we talk of development, when people till today, till this very moment are yearning for peace.”

Besides, Syngkon also demanded that Khasi language should be included in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution since it is a rich dialect with an old history.

“I want the day to come when you will all hear me speaking in my Khasi language in this august House. I am sure that the day when I speak in my indigenous language will come soon,” Syngkon said in his speech just before midnight.

Watch also: Northeast MPs make midnight debut in Parliament, comes down heavily on Centre

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