MGNREGA funds: Manipur group demands economic blockade on two National Highways.
Imphal (The Hawk): The All Manipur Tribals Development Grievances Forum (AMTDGF) on Wednesday called for an indefinite economic blockade on two crucial National Highways, which are Manipur's lifelines, starting on Thursday in order to demand the release of adequate funds under the MGNREGA scheme to all 16 districts of the state. Through Nagaland and Assam, National Highways 2 (Dimapur-Imphal) and 37 (Jiribam-Imphal) link Manipur to the rest of the nation. In a joint statement, AMTDGF President Hesho Lorho and General Secretary Gangonglung Khumba claimed that the state government's "adamant stand" against allocating enough funds to all districts had caused a severe economic crisis among those residing in Manipur's interior and tribally predominate regions. The tribal forum urged individuals, trucking and transportation associations, and civil society organisations to work with AMTDGF to ensure the success of their campaign. Additionally, it warned the populace to be wary of "vested organisations posing as tribal service messengers and attempting to mislead and confuse the people of the state through social media." "On October 10, the forum sent a message to Chief Minister N. Biren Singh requesting the disbursement of sufficient money approved under MGNREGA by the Union Rural Development Ministry. According to the AMTDGF statement, "On October 10, the State Government's Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Department released only a small amount to 16 districts of Manipur under MGNREGA." The economic blockade on the two important National Highways by the AMTDGF has received backing from a number of other local organisations. Officials from the state administration declined to comment on the allegations made by the AMTDGF about th ...Continue Reading →