Legislative ethnic cleansing will marginalize Khasi tribe

Editor,

Very few observers have till now realised that influx from across the borders and mainland India is not the only danger for the Khasi tribals of Meghalaya. Ironically it is the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council that poses this danger and this could happen if it does not backtrack from its aggressive short-sighted project and ill-advised plan of what it assumed would benefit the jaidbynriew. No doubt many are concerned that one day the Khasi people would become a minority because of the large scale influx from outside, but the worst could happen if KHADC  unleashes a dragon (if it could) that will in a few years time rob the existence of the people it vows to protect because of some unwise strategy.

These are the controversial bills to define who is a Khasi, so in short, (i) if your father is not a Khasi, the mother who is a Khasi along with the children are also not Khasi. (ii) If a Khasi takes the surname of the father who is also a Khasi, then the off-springs will not be classified as Khasi. (iii) This one affects religion, and it has already become legalised without consulting the Christian community. It is that if a Khasi male who is a Christian marries a non-Khasi woman then his children will have to go through a ceremony called ‘tang jait’ which since the Christian religion came to Khasi Hills has never been a mandatory practice by the Khasi believers of Christian faith. So those children of Christian families because of their Biblical faith who refuse this ‘forced initiation compelling ceremony’ will no more be counted as Khasis.

Shockingly, this will not happen to the Jaintias and Garos who are protected by their own Autonomous District Councils.

The scenario here is that these said tribes will not be marginalised but the Khasi tribals will be going down. e.g if Meghalaya is composed of indigenous 90% tribals, and the Khasis, Jaintias and Garos are 30% each, then the Khasi population after the legislative ethnic cleansing will be only about 20%. Unfortunately, the 10% or more will not be accepted as Khasi by the KHADC legislative decree. They cannot claim to be Scheduled tribes. Their future will be devastated and so too that of their their offsprings for generations to come, and sadly the Khasi race will surely be further marginalised, and the outcastes will become a nameless group of people without any rights and opportunities in their own land.

This is a wake up call for ‘ka Jaitbynriew.’ The public representatives and all those responsible Seng Bhalang should have serious thoughts about the subject matter before it is too late. A Khasi has always been a Khasi. Those that the so called legislative bill says otherwise were many of them in the forefront of the Hill State movement, and a number of them lost their lives in some agitations for their homeland with the pride of being Khasi. Interestingly there are those former and present MLAs and MDCs who are themselves the direct descendants of the very people that the mentioned bills has now classified as non-Khasis.

This requires that the Khasi community search its heart to prevent the tribe from diminishing and becoming lost and swallowed up in their own land by the legislative ethnic cleansing.

Yours etc.,

Kithok Kharkamni

Shillong-2

Ban all forms of plastics

Editor,

Through your esteemed daily I would like to congratulate the District Administration, East Khasi Hills for the notification banning the use of plastic in tourist spots etc. In this connection I would like to point out that earlier too such notification were issued but to no effect. Unless a concerted effort by forming task force etc to curb the menace of plastics is undertaken there will not be any impact of this notification.

Further, I would like to request the Deputy Commissioner, East Khasi Hills to bring out a notification for a blanket ban on the use of plastic in any forms.There has to be sincere effort by the State Government so that a total ban can be imposed as has been done in other states of our country. It is seen that plastic bags of different colours and microns are used by the vendors, shopkeepers and hawkers which are carcinogenic in nature.

If we are to save our environment, Umiam Dam and the city, then the use of plastic should be totally banned.

Yours etc.,

S.L. Singhania,

Via email

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