Voice of the People Party (VPP) legislator from North Shillong Adelbert Nongrum has trained his guns at the government over the controversial State Reservation Policy, stating that the hurried implementation of the roster system by the MDA I government last year was “nothing but a tactic to gain political mileage before elections.”
“The government should have placed the matter before the public before implementing it. The MDA I government took advantage of the high court order and hurriedly implemented the roster because election was near,” Nongrum said on April 10.
He further added that as leaders and policy makers, “we have no right to deprive the public, especially the youth, of the chance to talk and discuss issues as sensitive as the reservation roster, because after all, it has to do with employment.”
Terming the reservation policy as “outdated”, Nongrum said the policy needs to be reviewed. “The government should form a select committee and an expert team to come out with ideas and suggestions that are in line with the present generation, to plug the loopholes and ensure a balanced and fair policy,” he said.
The Meghalaya High Court issued an order in April last year, directing the state government to implement the roster system from the day the reservation policy came into effect. Subsequently, the implementation of the roster last year has drawn flaks from several quarters as many fear that the “retrospective” directive might have widescale ramifications on present and future recruitments.
Weeks after continuous debates over the issue, the High Court, on April 3, came up with another order, asking both the legislative and executive to decide on the cut-off year for implementation of the roster system.
“The policy should be prospective. The VPP had already expressed its concerns and we even tried to raise the issue in the Assembly but we were turned down. After the recent high court order, we submitted a memorandum to the government, demanding a special Assembly session to discuss the issue,” the VPP leader said.
Hitting out at the government over several other issues, Nongrum said, “The fact that the high court had to interfere from time to time on several issues is an indication of the failure of the legislative and executive.”
“In these past 50 years, we have really fallen back. Instead of moving forward, we are going backwards,” he added.