Wednesday, the 7th September 1949
The Constituent Assembly of India met in the Constitution Hall, New Delhi, at Nine of the Clock, Mr. President (The, Honourable Dr. Rajendra Prasad) in the Chair.
Mr. President : We shall now take up paragraph 16. Shri Kuladhar Chaliha can move his amendment No. 143.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliha (Assam: General) : Mr. President, Sir, I beg to move:
"That the second proviso to paragraph 16 of the Sixth Schedule be deleted."
I have a very modest amendment and I think the Drafting Committee will be pleased to accept it. I want that our Governor should have the power to exercise his powers property. If you read paragraph 16, you find that he is hedged in by so many conditions that in an emergency he will not be able to act properly. It reads-
"Dissolution of a District or Regional Council.
The Governor may on the recommendation of a Commission appointed under paragraph 14 of the Schedule by public notification order the dissolution of a Regional or a District Council and
(a) direct that a fresh general election shall be held immediately for the reconstitution of the Council or
(b) subject to the previous approval of the Legislature of the State assume the administration of the area under the authority of such Council himself or place the administration of such area under the Commission appointed under the said paragraph or any other body considered suitable by him for a period not exceeding twelve months:"
And then you have the proviso--
"Provided that when an order under clause (a) of this paragraph has been made the Governor may take the action referred to in clause (b) of this paragraph with regard to the administration of the area in question pending the reconstitution of the Council on fresh general election".
"Provided further that no action shall be taken under clause (b) of this paragraph without giving the District or the Regional Council, as the case may be, an opportunity of being heard by the legislature of the State."
Sir, I find the language in this paragraph is so very involved. The Governor will have first to appoint the Commission, and on the recommendation of the Commission, he shall have to consider the report of the Commission and then submit it to the Legislature for approval and if approved, to direct a general election to be held immediately for the reconstitution of the Council, and assume the administration of the area. But that safeguard even is not considered sufficient and it is provided further that no action shall be taken without giving the District or Regional Council an opportunity of being heard by the Legislature of the State. When will they be heard? At what stage? And what is the necessity of consulting them ? This little body, the District or Regional Council, will be heard again. Why ? The Commission will sit, examine different aspects of the questions and different parties will be heard. After this their recommendations will be put up to the Governor who after necessary examination will put up before the Legislature for approval. Then what or where is the necessity for District or Regional Council to be heard again by the Legislature, and when ? Should there be a second sitting of the Legislature ? There is the first sitting, for approval of the action of the Governor. And then look at the process and procedure involved, and the time taken. It is an emergency practically. The people are probably recalcitrant. They do not obey the law. They are rather restless, and therefore this action is necessary on the part of the Governor and he should act quickly. But then you hem the Governor in, in such a way that be. cannot act in an emergency. The procedure here laid down will take more than a year, when the situation requires that action should be taken in one day. Sir, I think my proposal is a very reasonable one, and the first proviso is quite enough. Let the Governor act some time when he feels like acting and it is not necessary that he should again be
circumscribed by the representation of the Regional Council or the District Council to the Legislature. It is not necessary that they should be heard again. My amendment, as I said, is a reasonable one and I commend it to the House and I hope Dr. Ambedkar will accept it.
Mr. President: There are two other amendments which I rule out, because they are on the same lines as the other amendment of Shri Brajeshwar Prasad. Dr. Ambedkar, do you wish to say anything ?
The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar (Bombay: General) : I should like to hear the Premier of Assam, if he has any views on this matter.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi (Assam: General) : Sir, with reference to the amendment moved by Srijut Chaliha just now for the deletion of the second proviso to para. 16, all that I have to say is that in every cage where action of this kind is taken-the parties affected thereby are given an opportunity of being heard. I agree that in this proviso no machinery by which this could be done has been laid down. Therefore, if Srijut Chaliha would modify his amendment as follows namely, that instead of the words "opportunity of being heard by the legislature" the words "an opportunity of placing the views of the Regional Council" may be substituted, then the purpose of his amendment would be served.
Shri Kuladhar Chalihas : I am prepared to do that.
The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar: I am prepared to accept the amendment of Mr. Bardoloi to the amendment of Mr. Chaliha, which he has accepted The proviso will now read like this :
"Provided further that no action hall be taken under clause (b) of this paragraph without giving the District or the Regional Council as the case may be an opportunity of placing their views before the legislature of the State."
Mr. President: The question is:
"That for the second proviso to paragraph 16 of the Sixth Schedule, the following be substituted :
'Provided further that no action shall be taken under clause (b) of this paragraph without giving the District or the Regional Council a,; the case may be an opportunity of placing their views before the legislature of the State.'"
The amendment was adopted-Mr. President : The question is:
"That paragraph 16, as amended, gland part of the Sixth Schedule."
The motion was adopted. Paragraph 16, as amended, was added to the Sixth Schedule. New Paragraph 16-A The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar: Sir, I beg to move:
"That after paragraph 16, the following paragraph be inserted:-
'16A. Exclusion of areas from autonomous districts in forming constituencies in such districts.-For the purpose of elections to the Legislative Assembly of Assam the Governor may by order declare that any area within an autonomous district shall not form part of any constituency to fill a seat or seats in the Assembly reserved for any such districts but shall form part of a constituency to fill a seat or seats in the Assembly not so reserved to be specified in the order."'
The object of this is to give the people who are included in the autonomous districts but really who are not part and parcel of the people inhabiting the autonomous districts an opportunity to have a place in the Legislative Assembly by having their own constituencies marked out for them.
Mr. President: The question is:
"That paragraph 16A stand part of the Sixth Schedule."
The motion was adopted. Paragraph 16-A was added to the Sixth Schedule. Mr. President: There is notice of another amendment by Pandit Kunzru. It refers to 19. Therefore, it may come later.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru (United Provinces : General) : Very well, Sir.
Paragraph 17 The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar: Sir, I move-
"That after sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 17 the following sub-paragraph be added:--
(3)In the discharge of his functions under sub-paragraph (2) of this paragraph as the agent of the President, the Governor shall act in his discretion.' "
Mr. President : There are certain amendments by Mr. Brajeshwar Prasad on the same lines.
Shri Brajeshwar Prasad (Bihar: General)
: Sir, I move.
"That for sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 17, the following be substituted:-
The administration of the tribal areas of Assam specified in the Table shall be carried on by the President through the Governor of Assam as his agent and the provisions of Part VIII of his Constitution shall apply thereto as if such area were a territory specified in Part IV of the First Schedule'."
Sir, the whole object of this amendment is to bring both the parts of the Table under the government of the President. I have spoken on this subject more than once. I shall not dilate and repeat my arguments. I am convinced of the fact that the policy pursued by the British Government was a very sound one. I am not at all keen whether Biharis, Bengalis, Oriyas and Assamese are allowed to go into those territories. It is a matter which concerns the defence of the country as a whole. It is an area which is of international importance. Therefore, all the tribal areas should be centrally administered areas.
The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar : I do not accept it, Sir.
Mr. President: Then I put Dr. Ambedkar's amendment first. The question is :
"That after sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 17, the following sub-paragraph be added:-
"(3) In the discharge of his functions under sub-paragraph (2) of this paragraph as the agent of the President, the Governor shall act in his discretion."
The amendment was adopted. Mr. President: Now I put Mr. Brajeshwar Prasad's amendment, which is really an amendment to the amendment just now carried. The question is:
"That for subparagraph (2) of paragraph 17, the following be substituted:--
The administration of the tribal areas of Assam specified in the Table shall be carried on by the President through the Governor of Assam as his agent and the provisions of Pan VIII of this Constitution shall apply thereto as if such area were a territory specified in Part IV of the First Schedule.' "
The amendment was negatived.
President : The question is:
"That paragraph 17, as amended, stand part of the Sixth Schedule."
The motion was adopted. Paragraph 17, as amended, was added to the Sixth Schedule. Paragraph 18
Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar : Sir, I move:
"That in paragraph 18, in line 22, the words 'in his discretion' be deleted."
"That clause (c) of paragraph 18 be deleted."
Mr. President: Amendments Nos. 148 and 149 are ruled out. Then we have amendments Nos. 223, 224, 225 and 226 which are more or less on the same lines. Would you like to move No. 226, Mr. Brajeshwar Prasad ? The other three I have ruled out.
Shri Brajeshwar Prasad: I do not like to move any of my amendments, Sir.
Mr. President: 'Men, I put Dr. Ambedkar's amendments No. 146 and 147.
The question is :
"That in paragraph 18, in line 22, the words 'in his discretion' be deleted."
The amendment was adopted.
Mr. President: The question is:
"That clause (c) of paragraph 18 be deleted."
The amendment was adopted.
Mr. President: The question is : "That paragraph 18 of the Sixth Schedule, as amended, be adopted. The motion was adopted. Paragraph 18, as amended, was added to the Sixth Schedule. Paragraph 19 The Honourable Dr. B. R. Ambedkar: Sir, I move:
"That with reference to amendments No. 150 and 151 of List I (Seventh Week) for Paragraph 19 and the Table appended to it the following paragraph and Table be substituted :-"19. Tribal areas.--(1) The, areas, specified in Parts I and II of the Table below shall be the tribal areas within the State of Assam.
(2) The United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District shall comprise the territories which before the commencement of this Constitution were known as the Khasi States and the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District, excluding any areas for the time being comprised within the cantonment and municipality of Shillong, but including so much of the area comprised within the municipality of Shillong as formed part of the Khasi State of Mylliem:
Provided that for the purposes of clauses (e) and (f) of sub-paragraph (1) of paragraph 3,
paragraph 4 and paragraph 5 and subparagraph (2), clauses (a). (b) and (d) of subparagraph (3) and sub-paragraph (4) of paragraph 8 of this Schedule, no part of the area comprised within the municipality of Shillong shall be deemed to be within the District.
(3) Any reference in the Table below to any district (other than the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District) or administrative area, shall be construed as a reference to that district or area on the date of commencement of this Constitution :
Provided that the tribal areas specified in, Part II of the 'I able below shall not include any such areas in the plains as may, with the previous approval of the President, be notified by the Governor of Assam in this behalf.
Table PART I.
1. The United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District.
2. The Garo Hills District.
3. The Lushai Hills District.
4. The Naga Hills District.
5. The North Cachar Hills.
6. The Mikir Hills District.
1. North-East Frontier Tract including Balipara Frontier Tract, Tirap Frontier Tract Abor Hills District, Misimi Hills District.
2. The Naga Tribal Area.'"
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : Sir, with your permission, I shall move amendments Nos. 330, 332 and 333 together.
Sir, I move :
"That after paragraph 16 of the Sixth Schedule, the following paragraph be inserted
'16A. Provisions applicable lo areas specified in Part 1A of the Table appended to paragraph 19.
(1) Notwithstanding anything contained in this Constitution. no Act of Parliament or of the Legislature of the State shall apply to any tribal area specified in Part 1A of the Table appended to paragraph 19 of this Schedule unless the Governor by public notification so directs; and the Governor in giving such directions with respect to any Act may direct that the Act shall in its application to the area or to any specified part thereof have effect subject to such exceptions or modifications as be thinks fit.
(2) The Governor may make regulations for the peace and good government of any a tribal area and any regulation so made may repeal or amend any Act of Parliament or of the Legislature of the State or any existing law which is for the time being applicable to a area. Regulations made under this sub-paragraph shall be submitted forthwith to the President and until assented to by him shall have no effect."
My second amendment runs as follows :
"That in paragraph 19 of the Sixth Schedule, for the words and figures 'Parts I and II' the words and figures 'Parts 1, IA, and II' be substituted."
My last amendment is:
'That for Part I of the Table appended to paragraph 19 of the Sixth Schedule, following be substituted:-PART I.
1. The Lushai Hills District.
2. The Naga District.
3. The North Cachar Sub-division of Cachar District.
1. The Khasi and Jaintia Hills District excluding the cantonment and the municipality of Shillong but including so much of the area comprised within such municipality as forms part of the Mylliem State
2. The Garo Hills District.
3. The Mikir Hills portion of Nowgong and Sibsagar Districts excepting the mouzas of Barpathar and Sarupathar." I have put forward these amendments in order to place, a difficulty that I feel, before the House and in particular before my honourable Friend, Dr. Ambedkar. The areas that are mentioned in Table I appended to paragraph 19 as moved by him contains all those areas that were formerly regarded as excluded or partially excluded areas. The difference between these areas was that while the Governor could act in his discretion in regard to excluded areas, he could only exercise his individual judgment-in regard to partially excluded areas. In other words, while in connection with excluded areas be was not bound to consult his Ministers at all, in respect of partially excluded areas he was bound to act according to their advice, unless he felt that he must dissent from it. Now this distinction no longer exists because the Governor, practically speaking, is required in all cases to act on the advice of his Ministers
Shri T. T. Krishnamachari (Madras: General): Bar one
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : I have said 'practically speaking. The only exception is with regard to areas specified in Part II of the table appended to paragraph 19. There he has to act in his discretion because he will act as an agent of the President and obviously the directions given by the President cannot be allowed to be modified by the Provincial Ministers. But though the legal distinction between excluded and partially excluded areas has been done away with by the Draft Constitution, the fact to which it corresponded still exists. What lay at the bottom of the division of backward areas into excluded and partially excluded was that while areas that were totally unable to look after their' own interests were classified as excluded, other backward areas, owing to their contact with the people of the plains and thereby being in a better position to protect their interests than those living in the most backward areas, i.e., the excluded areas, were classified as partially excluded areas. This distinction was made, it 'meant that the people living in the partially excluded areas, however backward they might from our point of view, were more advanced than those living in the excluded areas.
Now the arrangements made in the Sixth Schedule are concerned with the protection of the interests of the most backward people in respect of certain matters. I have no objection whatsoever to this protection being given. On the contrary, i welcome it and I hope tht the new awakening on the part of the State in respect of the duty that it owes to the tribal people, who have been neglected for centuries and centuries, will bring about a speedy improvement in the condition of the people in the excluded areas. But is it necessary for this purpose, that areas more advanced than those that were formerly known as excluded should be placed on the same footing as the most backward areas? I am all in favour of establishing local self-government in areas that were formerly known as partial excluded areas that is, the Khasi and Jaintia Hills district minus the Khasi States that were at that time quite distinct from the British administered portion of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills district, the Garo Hills districts and the Mikir Hills district. I know, Sir, what the report of the Bardoloi Committee and the memorandum of the Assam Government have to say on this point. These documents show that the people living in the areas that I have just referred to are backward. But fact remains that fourteen years ago they were though to be more advanced than the people living in areas that were then known as excluded areas. Is it necessary in order to improve, the condition of the people living in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills district or the Garo Hills district or the Mikir Hills to make no distriction between them and the people living in the Naga Hills district, the Kushai Hills district and the North Cachar sub-Division of the Cachar district? I see no reason why the status of the people living in the former areas should be lowered and why they should be regarded as helpless when, owing to their intercourse with the people of the plains, their consciousness has been awakened and they are better able to look after their vital interests than those living in the Naga Hills. It may be though that if district council and regional councils are established in the areas formerly known as partially excluded areas, no harm would be done to them and that there was therefore no reason for objecting to giving them the rights that the people living there would get under this Constitution.
Sir, in order to clear our minds on this point let us consider whether we would approve of such an arrangement in connection with the plains districts. Somebody may say, if it is desirable for a local body to enjoy the rights that are being conferred on regional and district councils under Schedule Six, there is no reason why the more advanced people should not enjoy them. What would our reply be in that case? Our reply would be that, however good the provisions of the Sixth Schedule might seem, they segregate people living in different districts and thus make unity much more difficult. I feel the same difficulty in connection with the inclusion of what were partially excluded areas before in the table placed before us by Dr. Ambedkar. When these people have reached a state of development in which they can better look after themselves than those who are living, say in the Naga Hills District, why should we regret that fact? Why should we make the arrangements with regard to them rigid and make future changes more difficult? Our policy should be to take advantage of the natural progress made by them in respect of the understanding of their interests and bring them closer to the other areas, that is, to the plains districts without in any way affecting heir essential interests. This is the purpose of the first amendment I have moved. If the position that I have taken up is correct and honourable Members share my view, then it is obviously desirable, unless Dr. Ambedkar can give us convincing reasons to the contrary, that the arrangements for the tribes mentioned in Part IA of my table should be different from those made for the tribal areas mentioned in Part I.
Now, under the Government of India Act, the Governor exercises two powers in relation to partially excluded areas. In the first place he can modify or amend any law passed by the Central or provincial legislature in its application to partially excluded areas. He enjoys this power even in respect of the excluded areas. In the second place he has the power to make rules for the peace and good government of the tribal areas, whether excluded or partially excluded. It was thought that these provisions by themselves were sufficient to enable the Governor to protect the interests of the people living in the partially excluded areas. In the excluded areas, in some places, there were tribal councils and there were other arrangements for enabling the people to take counsel among themselves. But the arrangements that existed in the partially excluded area were not of the same kind according to the report of the Bardoloi Committee. Election in some form of the representatives of the partially excluded areas to the provincial legislature is in existence. Though the election is indirect in some places, in this respect, the partially excluded areas are in a better position than the excluded areas. Now it is proposed to place both of them on the same footing. I venture to think that the interests of the people living in the partially excluded areas and the interests of the province of Assam as a whole would be better consulted if we continued, in relation to the government of these areas which are specified in pat IA of my table, the arrangement that existed under the Government of India Act, 1935. I have already said, and I should like to repeat, in order to prevent any misunderstanding from arising, that I am in favour of complete protection of the interests of the people who will be unable without the help of the State to look after themselves. All that I have submitted to the House is that it is not necessary to treat the areas of present known as partially excluded and excluded in the same way, because that is not in accord with the differences in the mental advancement and the practical knowledge of the people of these areas.
My last two amendments relate to the Table appended to paragraph 19. In accordance with the first amendment moved by me, I have divided the table into three parts, I IA and II. This requires no explanation in view of the remarks I have already made. The last amendment however requires some explanation. In item 1 of Part IA of the Table, I havenot alterd the area of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District. In other words, the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District will include only the area that it does at present and that was recommended by the Bardoli Committee. In the Table moved by Dr. Ambedkar, however, it has been stated that the Mylliem State should get back such portion of the municipality which has been in existence for two or three generations will lose a part of the area that it has been governing for so long a time. The Bardoloi Committee undoubtedly had all the facts of the situation before it but it nevertheless recommended no change in this respect. Yet, we are now told that the limits of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District must be increased and those of the Shilong Municipality must be correspondingly contacted.
This is not a small matte, Sir. The Memorandum of the Assam Government explaining the position of the tribal people states on page 2 that the larger part of the municpality of Shilong is comprised in the Mylliem State. I see no reason why so great a change should be made. Dr. Ambedkar, in putting forward his table, which is different from that included in the Draft Constitution, did not say a word to justify this change. he treated it as if it were of no concern to us, and therefore needed no notice. I think, however, that the matter is not as insignificant as he considers it to be, It is a matter of some concern that an area that has been within the jurisdiction of the municipality of Shiling for so long a time should be taken out of it and included in the tribal area. If it is desired that the tribal people living in this area should be able to vote in the elections to the district Council, that can be allowed. Paragraph 16A moved by Dr. Ambedkar makes provision for the exclusion of voters not belonging to the tribal area from the tribal voters. We can on the same lines make a provision allowing the tribal people living within the municipality of Shilong to vote in connection with the elections to the District Council, but there is no reason why for this purpose any part, in fact the greater part, of the municipality of Shilong shouldbe excluded from it and be given back to the Mylliem State. I know, Sir, that negotiations are being carried on for the merging of the twenty five Khasi States in the Khasi and Jaintia Hills District but even when this amalgamation has taken place, there will be no reason why the Shilong municipality should be deprived of any part of the area but it controls now. If people there have become used to more advanced ways of life and if their interests have been adequately protected so far, the burden of proving that the present arrangement is unsatisfactory lies on those who want to bring about a change in existing position. Sir, I hope that I have explained sufficiently the reasons for the amendments that I have placed before the House.
Mr. President : Pandit Kunzru, in your amendment No. 333 in Part IA you have used the same expression as Dr. Ambedkar.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : I do not think, so, Sir.
Mr. President : It is the same wording, "excluding the cantonment and the municipality of Shilong but includng so much of the area comprised within such municipality as form part of the Mylliem State".
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : I am sorry, Sir. That was a mistake. Those words should not be there. The words "but including, so much of the area comprised within such municipality as forms part of the Mylliem State" should be cut out. I think that this item should be retained in the form in which it is included in the Draft Constitution. This is the form recommended by the Bardoloi Committee.
Mr. President : There are certain amendments to the amendment moved by Dr. Ambedkar. They have come too late. I find that several amendments to the same effect have been given notice of. I will allow one of them to be moved. Mr. Chaliaha and another gentleman whose name I cannot read want that in amendment No. 331 the words "but including so much of the area comprised within the municipality of Shilong as formed part of the Khasi State of Mylliem" be omitted. You can move it if you like.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliah : There is also another amendment, Sir, for the insertion of the words "except the mouza of Dimapur" after the words "The Naga Hills District"
Mr. President : You can move both. I find Mr. Das has also given notice of an amendment to the same effect.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri (Assam : General) : May I explain what we want by moving these amendments : firstly, that the entire municipality of Shilong including the area owned by the Mylliem State should be excluded from the jurisdiction of any kind of the autonomous district and secondly, that the Mouza of Dimaur inNaga Hills which is inhabited by non-tribal people should be outside the jurisdiction of the District Council of Naga Hills.
Mr. President : Mr. Chaliha will move his amendments and make it clear.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliah : Sir, I beg to move :
"That in amendment No. 331 List V (Seventh Week) in item 3 of part I after the words `Naga Hills District', the words `except the mouza of Dimapur' be added."
Sir, I also move :
That in amendment No. 331 of List V (Seventh Week) the words `but including so much of the area comprised within the municipality of Shilong as formed part of the Khasi State of Mylliem' be omitted."
Sir, firstly I shall take up the mouza of Dimapur. In telling you the history, I shall be a little long and I shall ask the patience of the House to hear me. It is said that this country otherwise called the Brahmaputra valley was conquered by the Kacharis as early as 3000 B.C. and it continued under them till lately. You will find a reference to this history in pages 247 to 249 of Gait's History of Assam.
"In the thirteen century it would seem that the Kachari Kingdom extended along the south bank of the Brahmaputra, from the Dikhu to the Kallang or beyond and included also the valley of the Dhansiri and the tract which now forms the North Cachar Sub-division….Towards the end of this century, it is narrated that the outlying Kachari settlements east of the Dikhu river withdrew before the advance of the Ahoms. For a hundred years this river appears to have formed the boundary between the two nations and no hostilities between them are recorded until 1490, when a battle was fought on its banks. The Aboms were defeated and were forced to sue for peace. But their power was rapidly growing, and during the next thirty years, in spite of this defeat, they gradually thrust the Kachari boundary back to the Dhansiri river".
When war again broke out in 1526, the neighbourhood of this river was the scene of two battles : the Kacharis were victorious in the first but suffered a crushing defeat in the second. Hostilities were renewed in 1531 and a collission occurred in the south of what is now the Golaghat sub-division in which the Kacharis were defeated and Detcha, the brother of their king, was slain. The Ahoms followed up their victory and, Dhansiri, forty-five miles south of Golaghat. Khunkhara, the Kachari king, became fugitive and a relative named. Detsung was set up by the victors in his stead.
"The ruins of Dimapur, which are still in existence, show that, at that period, the Kacharis had attained a state of civilization considerably in advance of that of the Ahoms. The use of brick for building purposes was then practically unknown to the Ahoms, and all their buildings were of timber or bamboo, with mud-plastered walls. Dimapur, on the other hand, was surrounded on three sides by a brick wall of the aggregate length of nearly two miles, while the fourth or southern side was bounded by the Dhansiri river. On the eastern side was a fine solid brick gateway with a pointed arch and stones pierced to receive the hinges of double heavy doors. It was flanked by octagonal turrets of solid brick, and the intervening distance to the central archway was relieved by false windows of ornamental moulded brick-work."
"Inside the enclosure are some ruins of a temple or perhaps a market place, the most notable feature of which is a double row of carved pillars of sandstone averaging about 12 feet in height and 5 in circumference. There are also some curious V-shaped pillars which are apparently memorial stones. There are several fine tanks at Dimapur, two of which are nearly 300 yards square."
From 1531 till Word War No. 1, the Mouza of Dimapur was under the Ahoms kings and in the district of Sibsagar under the British but somehow or other the Political Agent of Manipur or a D.C. at Kohima got annoyed with a Station Master who was not very polite to him, because his seats in the first class compartment were not reserved for him or that a telegram was not received duly and the Station Master was not obliging and so a representation was made out and Dimapur Station was included in the Naga Hills and taken out from Golaghat sub-division of Sibsagar District which formed part of it for about hundred years even during British rule. In those days it was the object of the British to suppress the Assammese as much as possible as they became politically conscious and those were the worst days one would have passed there. Sir, in the beginning of my life I was a magistrate of Golaghat and was in charge of the Sub-division for sometime and I know that that place is inhabited by 20,000 people and there is not a single Naga anywhere in that part of the world.
Now, Sir, it is a prosperous state where you find Assamese, Begalees, Sindhis, Punjabees, Sikhs, Marwaris doing business after having invested crores of rupees; but do you know their fate? They can be ejected in 24 hours bag and baggage. Their business can be ruined and they are still included in that area. It is rather an irony of fate why the Drafting Committee could not see to it. Sir, I happened to be the President of the Excluded area of Assam as well as All India Excluded Area Conference at Haripur and I know about the Excluded areas much better than many people. I was the President of Assam Excluded Areas Association for a long time and therefore, I say with all humility that the inclusion of the Dimapur mouza in the Naga Hills is the negation of justice. It is nothing but consigning a civilized people, a forward people, a forward people, an advanced community tot he mercy of the autonomous districts, which have rather primitive rules and primitive ways of criminal laws and Civil Procedure Code. I submit and request, if they care to hear, that they accept this humble suggestion of ours. They are talking, they hardly give attention to my speech in spite of my voice; I am sorry that Dr. Ambedkar is not attending at all to what I have said.
Shri Brajeshwar Prasad : The honourable Member should be stopped till the gets attention of the Members of the Drafting Committee.
Mr. President : I know my duty.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliha : I wish to state to the Drafting Committee again that the Mouza of Dimapur is inhabited by civilized people, men from Madras, Bombay, Assam, Bengal, Punjab and other provinces and crores of rupees have been invested and if this area is to be governed as a tribal area by a Deputy Commissioner, who can do what he likes, or by autonomous councils or regions where none but a tribal can be a member as it is going to be now, the people will be ruined and they can be eschewed in 24 hours. I therefore request the Drafting Committee to give us a little attention and exclude the Mouza of Dimapur. Up to the World War No. 1 it was included in the Golaghat sub-division of Sibsagar District. It was never in the Naga Hills. Here I should like to say that Mr. Guha was the Sub-divisional Officer there and he knows the mouza of Dimapur and that it was in Golaghat Sub-division. I was myself a Magistrate there and I know that part of the country very well. I submit that you may be pleased to accept that amendment and will not stand on dignity or ceremony.
As regards the cantonments and municipality of Shillong I should like to speak that the entire area is inhabited by the people of Assam, Bengal and of other areas. Men of the Khasi tribes have so much advanced that there are scholars, principals of colleges and ministers and if you call them "tribes", it is an injustice to them. Here we have the highest literacy in Assam and as such I should think that Mylliem State which is within the municipality of Shillong should be excluded from part I of the table. I commend both these amendments for the acceptance of the House and I trust that the Drafting Committee will be pleased to accept them.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : Mr. President, Sir, I am not sure if I have followed correctly the import of the amendment which was moved by my honourable Friend Dr. Ambedkar. But I would say that the amendment which he has moved this morning is merely a camouflage.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : Camouflage for what?
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : Because Dr. Ambdkar, seems to indicate by this amendment that he has altered his view in regard to the inclusion of any part of the Shillong Municipality in the autonomous district.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I have not altered my view.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : Paragraph (2) of the amendment as it stands includes……..
Shri T.T. Krishnamachari : May I point out, Sir, that we here are completely disinterested in this matter and there is no need for any camouflage at all.
Mr. President : There is no question of camouflage because the paragraph is perfectly clear that he wants to exclude, the Municipality of Shillong except that part of it which is comprise in the state of Mylliem.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : But includes that part which forms part of the Mylliem State; that is my difficulty. He excludes the Municipality and Cantonment of Shillong, but includes so much of the area as is comprised within the Municipality of Shillong and forms part of the Khasi State of Mylliem.
Mr. President : There is no camouflage; it is stated in so many words there. You say it is a camouflage; I say it is not, because it is sated clearly in so many words.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : I stand corrected. If Dr. Ambedkar does not practise camouflage, he would not be a good fighter. But, what I thought was that certain honourable Members may be misled as I was misled by what he had stage in his provision.
The proviso seeks to exclude some paragraphs from operation in the Mylliem portion of the Shillong Municipality. I will show presently that these exceptions do not go very far. My first proposal is that these words appearing in paragraph 2 of his amendment, namely, "but including so much of the area comprised within the municipality of Shillong as forms part of the Khasi State which says "The United Khasi-Jaintia Hills Districts", the words "excepting the Municipality and Cantonment of Shillong" should be added. The original draft was "The Khasi and Jaintia Hills District excluding the town of Shillong". The words "Town of Shillong" are comprehensive enough; it included the entire Municipality of Shillong as well as the Cantonment. I would have no objection if the original draft-stood as it is. Now, I want to omit these words and also that the table should be amended accordingly, and it should be stated. The United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District excepting the Cantonment and Municipality of Shillong".
Let us see what benefit we have got under the proviso. Under the proviso, Dr. Ambedkar has excluded the operation of clauses (e) and (f) of sub-paragraph (1) of paragraph (3).
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : You are studying now!
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : Sub-paragraph (1), paragraph 3, clause (e) says : "establishment of village or town committees or councils and their power". So far so good. By the omission of this clause, the question of establishing village or town committees in the Shillong municipality so far as it is comprised in the Mylliem State would not arise. But that is not much of a benefit; that would only remove a confusion which would have otherwise taken place. Clause (f) says, "any other matter relating to village or town administration including village or town police and public health and sanitation". That is also good so far as it goes. Because, if those clauses (e) and (f) remain, it would have meant that within the Municipality of Shillong, that is to say, in the capital town of Assam, there would have been another police besides the Assam Police. It will be a Town police or village police, and there would be another management for public health and sanitation which of course, the autonomous district will have failed to carry out. But the other provisions in paragraph 3 will remain in force: that is to say, provisions regarding allotment, occupation or use of land, management of any forest, use of any canal or watercourse, regulation of the practice of jhum, appointment or succession of Chiefs etc. Let us see what further exemption this amendment makes.
The next exemption is about paragraph 6. Paragraph 6 says, that the District Councils for an autonomous district may establish, construct or manage primary schools dispensaries, markets, ferries, fisheries, roads and waterways…. What is the meaning of this amendment, may I ask Dr. Ambedkar ? Where are fisheries in the municipality of Shillong comprised in the Mylliem State? Fisheries, roads, all these belong to the Government of Assam. How does the exclusion of this paragraph benefit anybody in any way? It is absolutely meaningless.
The next exemption is made in respect of sub-paragraph (4) of paragraph 8. Sub-paragraph (4) of paragraph 8 says that a Regional Council or District Council as the case may be may make regulations to provide for the levy and collection of any of the taxes specified in sub-paragraphs (2) and (3). That only applies to the levy of any tax. These are the clauses which he had exempted from operation by the District Council, in that portion of the Shillong Municipality which lies in the State of Mylliem.
Mr. President : Mr. Chaudhuri, probably you did not notice that Dr. Ambedkar added two more paragraphs 4 and 5.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : "Provided that for the purposes of clauses (e) and (f) of sub-paragraphs 4 and 5.
Mr. President : After that, he has added paragraphs 4 and 5.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : That is not in the amendment.
Mr. President : While he was moving his amendment he added these paragraphs.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : I am glad that he has added paragraphs 4 and 5, which relate to the administration of justice in the autonomous districts. I am glad that these clauses are not in operation and that the status quo is maintained. The High Court of Assam has complete jurisdiction over the Municipality of Shillong. The judiciary there is the ordinary judiciary as it obtains in other partsof the province. But, what he does not exempt is paragraph 10, which, in my opinion, is the most objectionable paragraph of all these paragraphs. Paragraph 10 says that the District Council of an autonomous district may make regulations for the regulation and control of money-lending or trading within the district by persons other than scheduled tribes resident in the district. Now there are business concerns and even banks in the Sates and the Districts Council will be in a position to regulate their affairs and furthermore this regulation may prescribe that no one excepting the holder of a license shall carry on the business of money-lending. Ordinarily the Assam Money-Lenders' Act would apply to the Municipality of Shillong but by virtue of this para, the Assam Money-Lenders' Act will not be enforced and another money-lenders' Act may be introduced by the District Council. Clause (d) of para 10 reads :
"No person who is not a member of the scheduled tribes resident in the district shall carry on wholesale or retail business in any commodity except under a licence issued in that behalf by the District Council."
This will be in force even after this amendment.
In the Shillong Municipality two-thirds belong to Mylliem State, and if two-thrids is taken out then very little remains of the town. There will be the Cantonment which is inhabited more or less by a floating population and there will be what was before as the British portion of Shillong comprising the Secretariat and other office buildings and a little space of Gohati Road with some shops. This is all that we shall have in the Shillong Municipality if we exclude the portion which belongs to the Mylliem State. The large majority of the non-Khasi people who were working in the Government offices and private offices and who are carrying on business there are living in the Mylliem State itself. All these people will reap the benefit enjoyed by others. Now, may I ask if this position would be acceptable to this House, that in the town itself the major portion of the town in which is living the non-Khasi people who have been compelled to go there to make their living should be deprived of the advantages which is enjoyed by people living in other parts of the town? I am afraid the House is not taking that sympathetic interest which it ought to take in matters like this. Why should people who have bee compelled to live there on account of their vocation, on account of the fact that Shillong is the Capital of Assam, be deprived of ordinary facilities. Even now there is a clamour for removing the Capital to its original place Gohait. In Shillong they cannot acquire property without the permission of the Deputy Commissioner and they have to huddle themselves toothier in one-third part of that town and they cannot get any land to purchase outside by virtue of this provision. If anybody wants to purchase land it is dependent on the permission of Government and that permission may be refused. There is no remedy for it. Not to speak of purchasing from tribals, if Mr. Guha wants to purchase a plot from me he cannot purchase it without Government's permission. The position will be worse if the entire right of granting permission to sale of property is made over to the District Council.
So in order to avoid all difficulties I appeal to every Member of the House to consider our position, whether they like us to be subjected to such disabilities as regards our properties as has been envisaged by this Constitution. Such disabilities do not exist anywhere in India and it will be aggravated by this amendment of Dr. Ambedkar. If things remain as they are now viz., Khasi State will be without Shillong. I would have no objection. Why Dr. Ambedkar is anxious to introduce this provision in order to take away the rights of ordinary citizens it is incomprehensible. What mesmerism has been practised over him is more that what I can see. I cannot understand a man like him trying to circumscribe him. He has come to a position where he can ridicule an orphan, Oliver Twist or David Copperfield whatever he calls him. He has come to a position that he can ridicule a hungry orphan. But I hope he will forget Oliver Twist and David Copperfield but try to remember Barkis. Let Barkis be willing I would ask Barkis Ambedkar to be willing to accept any reasonable proposition which is put before him irrespective of whatever mesmerism and witchcraft he has been subjected to.
Mr. President : I suggest that the Premier of Assam should assist the House with his opinion in this matter.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : Sir, I am grateful for the opportunity you have given me to speak on the amendments that have been presented before the House.
I oppose Dr. Kunzru's amendment seeking to maintain the old distinction between the partially excluded and the fully excluded areas.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : We cannot hear Mr. Bardoloi.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : I think I must speak much louder. Well, I was saying that Dr. Kunzru's amendment seeks to perpetuate the old distinctions which were maintained in the province between the partially excluded area and the fully excluded area. The fully excluded areas were within the discretion of the Governor, while the administration of the partially excluded areas was under his individual judgment. Now, since August 1947, these areas, both partially excluded and the fully excluded areas are under the administration of the provincial government and I could tell you, in the meantime, nothing has occurred by which it could be shown that the administration has deteriorated or anything like that. What I would therefore, point out is tht there is absolutely no necessity for changing the general structure which has been adopted by this Constitution, in reference to the powers of the Governor.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : May I ask Mr. Bardoloi whether he realises that my amendment practically reproduces the provision of Section 92 of the Government of India Act, 1935, as amended in 1947?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : I do know. But what I desire to point out is that there is absolutely no necessity, after this Sixth Schedule has been accepted, for maintaining this distinction. That is what I desire to point out. In the first place, even before 1947, the whole administration of the partially as well as the fully excluded areas was done under certain regulations, which were promulgated in the name of the Governor and the governor or the District Officers saw to the administration of these areas. But in fact, what these District Officers did was to accept virtually the authority of the village courts in almost all its affairs, not merely in the field of administration but also in the sphere of the administration of justice. What the present Schedule Six wants to do is only to put this thing in a statutory form up to a certain stage, and beyond that stage the administration is integrated with the general working of the Constitution for all areas both in the region of administration as well as in the region of justice. It is now integrated after a certain stage with the rest of the government, in all their functions. Therefore, I do not see, Sir, how the thing would improve if we have two categories of tribals, even in reference to those six districts which have now been put in the Sixth Schedule.
With reference to the amendment that has been tabled by Mr. Chaliha, we have the fullest sympathy. The Advisory Sub-committee for the tribal areas had investigated into this affair. It is quite true that for administrative reasons only about 35 years or 40 years ago – 35 years I think is more correct – this area of Dimapur was brought under Naga Hill administration. The mouzas of Sarapathan and Borpathn in Golaghat sub-division brought under partially excluded area with the result that this portion- the mouza of Dimapur – was cut off altogether from the normal administration. They had, therefore, to tag it on with the administration of the Naga Hills. We had the opportunity of examining the inhabitants of this area and we saw that they were determinedly opposed to their inclusion in the Naga autonomous District. We fully sympathize with their aspirations, taking into consideration that this place at one time was the capital of a big kingdom of the Kacharis. But the remedy has already been provided in the Constitution, and I think, it is not possible for us to take the case of particular mouzas piece-meal. The Constitution can provide only general articles or provisions for the purpose of meeting such cases. It will be seen that it is possible under paragraph 1, sub-clause (3) to diminish any area in an autonomous district. I do not know whether the word "diminish" would cover such cases as we now have, and I should have no objection to substituting it by the word "exclude" (that might also better serve the purpose) and in the third reading, this correction, if necessary, may be made.
Prof. Shibban Lal Saksena (United Provinces : General) : What harm is thee if you accept Mr. Chaliha's amendment?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : There is no harm. But by saying "Dimapur mouza" it will be difficult to fix the boundary. We have to define the boundary.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliah : The boundary is there already. You can look at the old map of Sibsagar District, which are available in the Government of India Survey Department and even Assam also.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : But that is a matter on which there may be disputes. The Nagas may say that their district would go up to a certain point and the Dimapur people would say that their boundary would come up to some other point. This matter may be disposed of satisfactorily under the provisions of the Sixth Schedule that we have already adopted. Therefore, it is not necessary (while I have the fullest sympathy with the object of this amendment), to go into the details of many places where such distribution of boundary will be desirable.
Then there is also another provision, 16-A which says that people living in any area, even within an autonomous district may, for the purpose of the franchise, exercise the same in the general constituency instead of in the tribal constituency. This has also been made possible under provision 16-A which we have passed just now.
Then with regard to the amendment of Mr. Chaudhuri – I am not sure whether it was an amendment, but he made certain remarks. It is very necessary for us to understand the real position of the town of Shillong. It is there that more than half of its area are included in the Mylliem State. The question that now faces us is how to maintain the District Council with its powers, and at the same time integrate it with the larger administration of the town of Shillong. That is the question. The view of the Drafting Committee as I understand was that while for the purpose of municipal and general administration the rights should be there with the provincial government or any authority created by it, the right of the tribal people of this area to their representation in the District Council should not go. The amendment has been put before us with that idea, I believe : in the first place, to let a uniform administration prevail in the Shillong Area including the whole of the municipality, at the same time to give the tribal people their right to representation in the District Council. It will be seen that the new amendment proposed by Dr. Ambedkar is to exclude from the operation of the District Council such rights and powers which as municipal administration the municipality under the authority of the government should be able to exercise and all those powers have been given. Secondly, their rights in regard to justice in court have also been conceded in paragraphs 4 and 5 which deal with the matter of justice.
An Honourable Member : Distribution of land?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : There is very little of distribution of land . All these lands are occupied by people today and it it comes under the District Council administration with the merger of the Khasi States in Assam, then all the rights of the Government for acquisition of land will be there.
Mr. President : What about para, 10 about money-lending?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : If the autonomous district picture prevails there is no difficulty whatsoever. Three-fourths of the men are elected. They may bring in any new regulation and all the old administration is to remain according to the provisions of that paragraph. When we know for a certainty that these States area are going to be merged into the districts of Assam, I do not think that there can be anything wrong.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : May I be permitted to explain? According to Dr. Ambedkar's amendment, para 10 will apply to that portion of Shillong Municipality which is under the Mylliem State because so far as para 10 is concerned, that portion of the Municipality will be under the District Council and the District Council under para 10 may prescribe that no person who is not a member of the scheduled tribes resident in that district can carry on wholesale or retail business except under a licence granted by the Council. Does the Premier of Assam desire that this clause should be applicable to persons resident in Shillong Municipality the land of which belongs to Mylliem State and does he want that Dimapur which does not bear one single tribal man should also be subject to this regulation?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : The question of Dimapur should not have been raised for the simple reason that it may be altogether cut off from the Sixth Schedule or, if it remains, I assume it will be governed by para 10. It is necessary to understand what paragraph 10 says. You have read the potion relating to the necessity of obtaining a licence in the case of a non-tribal resident. As against this, there are these safeguards.
"Provided that no such regulation may be made under this paragraph unless they are passed by a majority of not less than three-fourths of the total membership of the District Council."
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : There cannot be a single non-tribal man in the municipality not to speak of three-fourths.
The Honourable Shri Gopinth Bardoloi : It is only in respect of three-fourths that this is applied. Three-fourths of them are to be elected one-fourth are to be nominated and those nominated members may be anybody. It is nowhere stated that they could not be non-tribals. Apart from that, there is also the proviso :
"That it shall not be competent under any such regulations to refuse the grant of a licence to a money-lender or a trader who has been carrying on business within the district since before the time of the making of such regualtions."
That means to say it does not apply to old cases. It applies to new cases.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : On a point of information, may I ask the honourable Member whether a non-tribal man can be a member of the autonomous council?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : There is no bar.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : There is.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : All regulations made under this Assam Assembly.
Mr. President : I think the Premier should be permitted to proceed in his own way.
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : All regulations made under this para, shall be submitted to the Governor and assented to by him. If there is any prejudicial regulation, the Governor cannot assent to it. But if it is thought that sub-para 10 will yet work harshly, I can agree personally to the deletion of sub clause (g) but in view of the fact that already there are so many safeguards for seeing that nothing wrong can be done under this sub-clause I do not think it is necessary.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : May I put a question to Mr. Bardoloi ? What I should like to know, Sir, is whether the Committee on Tribal Areas in Assam over which Mr. Bardoloi presided, has pointed out that the present system has led to any injustice to the tribal people living within the limits of the Shillong municipality?
The Honourable Shri Gopinath Bardoloi : I am sure no injustice whatsoever has been done. On the other hand it is trying to do all that is possible to be done with the finances at the disposal of the Government of Assam.
I also find that the safeguards are enough for the purpose of preventing any abuse of the powers of the district councisl?
Mr. President : What the Premier of Assam has suggested is that he would have personally no objection if, in the proviso moved by Dr. Ambedkar to paragraph 19(2), clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10 is also included. That gives power to the Council to prescribe that no person who is not a member of the scheduled tribes resident in the district shall carry on wholesale or retail business in any commodity.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : Sir, I did not think that my amendment No. 331 substituting a new text of paragraph 19 would cause any kid of difficulty such as the one which I now find. I did not, therefore, consider it necessary to spend much time in explaining the provisions contained in paragraph 19. But now that so much debate has taken place of an acrimonious sort I am bound to explain the provisions as contained in the new amended paragraph 19.
Now, the chief part f the controversy has centred round sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 19. I should like to explain what this means. It means that so far as the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District is concerned which is mentioned as entry 1 in Part I of the Table, that portion of the area comprised within the municipality of Shillong and which forms part of the Khasi State of Mylliem shall be part and parcel of the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District. It means that the part of the Mylliem state which is included in Shillong will form part of the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District. It is realised that this part of the Mylliem State is really subject now under the new provisions of paragraph 19 to two separate jurisdictions. It is subject to the jurisdiction of the Municipality of Shillong, because by this provision we are of altering the boundaries of the Shillong municipality. The boundaries of the Shillong municipality, as defined by the Municipal Act passed by the Assam Legislature, remains intact. According to that Act this particular part of the Mylliem State is part of the municipality. It is recognised that this double jurisdiction, namely the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District and the municipalty might come in conflict. In order to overcome this conflict, I have added the proviso to sub-clause (2). The effect of the proviso is this that for the purposes mentioned in the proviso the jurisdiction of the District Council of the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills District is ousted and to the extent that the jurisdiction of the municipality is restricted to this purpose mentioned in the proviso the jurisdiction of the District Council will continue over this area. The idea of the proviso is to avoid conflict of jurisdiction. Some people on the other side have said that the Mylliem State area should be completely excluded from the United Khasi-Jaintia Hills district and should be made exclusively part and parcel of the Shillong municipality.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : As it is now.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I do not know whether that is so. The point is this, that as some one from that side said – I think my Friend Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri – three-fourths of the municipality is really covered by this area. There is not the slightest doubt about it that so far as marriage laws, inheritance laws and other customs and manners are concerned, the people living in this part of the Mylliem State share the same laws, the same customs, the same marriage laws and ceremonies of the whole district. Consequently what will happen is this. Supposing this area were completely excluded from the United Khasi-JJaintia Hills district, the result will be that these people although they are fundamentally alike to their brethren interest of the part of the Mylliem State with regard to marriage laws, their customs, etc., etc., they will become at once subject to the general law of inheritance, general law of marriage, all general laws which the Parliament may make or which the Assam Legislature may make. I do not think that it is right that a part of the people who are homogeneous in certain matters should be severed in this manner. A pat will obtain autonomy so far as their tribal life is concerned and a part will be subject to the general law to which the rest of the population is subject. It is for this reason that the Drafting Committee felt that the provision contained in sub-clause (2) and the proviso which accompanies it was the proper solution of this problem, namely, that for the purpose of the municipality as defined in the proviso that part of the Mylliem State which is part of the municipality should remain subject to the municipality, while for purposes for which the district council if constituted that part should remain subject to the district council. There is no conflict and it helps to subserve the fundamental purpose, namely, that a homogeneous people should be subject to the same sort of laws, and to the same sort of administrative system which all of them should have and have.
Now, there may be some controversy as to whether the proviso is sufficiently big enough to cover all matters that ought to be covered or whether it is too narrow. I am not prepared to express any opinion about it. The drafting Committee has been guided in this matter by the two principal representatives, who must be credited with sufficient knowledge and information about this matter, namely the Premier of Assam and his colleague, Rev. Nichols-Roy. If they in their wisdom think that some other matters ought to be included, the Drafting Committee will certainly not raise any objection because the Drafting Committee has nothing to do with this matter
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : Is it that the non-Tribal people who live in Shillong have no voice in this matter?
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I cannot understand the point. What we have done is that the people living in this part have a double right. They have a right to elect their representatives under the Shillong Municipality and they will have a right to elect their representatives in the District Councils Beyond that, the jurisdiction is quite separate. I do not think there is any other point so far as this new paragraph 19 is concerned.
Shri Rohini Kumar Chaudhuri : On a point of information, does the Member who is now speaking, mean to say that those people in Dimapur where there is not a single tribal person, and those people in Shillong, are, to be guided entirely by the opinion of Rev. Nichols-Roy.
Mr. President : He has not said anything about Dimapur. He is dealing with the question by Mr. Bardoloi that paragraph 10, sub-clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) might be included in the proviso.
The Honoruable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I have no objection. We leave the matter to them. If they think that certain matters should be included, why should we object? We are acting upon their advice.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : May I ask, Dr. Ambedkar, for information on one point? Has the Drafting Committee or Mr. Bardoloi and the Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy who signed the report of the Tribal Areas Committee of Assam received any representation anything for a change in regard to the position of the tribal people living within the limits of the Shillong, municipality?
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I have not questioned their credentials nor have I examined whether they have fortified themselves with any such representation.
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : I put this question because my honourable Friend referred to the authority of the Prime Minister of Assam and Rev. Nichols-Roy. Both these gentlemen have signed the report of the Committee to which I have referred and that Committee says that the limits of the Shillong Municipality should be what they are now and does not suggest any change in the status of the people living in that area.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : That they may have done but, the report cannot act as an estoppel for further re-examination! I do not think we can carry the matter any further. As I said the Drafting Committee felt that this was such a local matter that they could not act without the authority or advice of the principal participants in this matter. We took their advice and we carried out the work. If they think……..
Shri Kuladhar Chaliah : In Dimapur people from all over India reside.
Mr. President : There is no use saying anything about Dimapur. He has said nothing about Dimapur.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I have so far said nothing about it; I am coming to it.
Now I come to the exclusion of certain areas from the autonomous districts.
In this connection I would like to remind the House of the new article 16-A which has just been passed. I would like you to refer to that. In framing article 16-A, two questions were raised. One question related to some two mouzas of what are called the Garo Hills. Along with that the question of the Dimapur area was also raised by my Friend Mr. Chaliha, and I think I am justified in saying that he was present at the Conference. There were three reprsentatives of Assam who were also present at this Conference. Mr. Bardoloi, Rev.Nichols-Roy and Mr. Chaliha and it was considered whether these mouzas of the Garo Hills and the Dimapur area should be separated from the autonomous districts. It was said at the conference that it was not desirable to separate them from the autonomous districts because the life of these mouzas- their economic life-was closely bound up with the life of the people in the autonomous districts. It was therefor esaid that it would be enough if these areas, that is to say, the three mouzas from the Garo Hills and the Dimapur area were separated purely for giving political representation to the inhabitants of this area in the Legislative Assembly. That was definitely stated by my Friend, Mr. Chaliha, who has now raised the question of the Dimapur area. It was therefore at their request and at the instance of these three representatives of Assam that paragraph 16-A was framed in the terms in which it has been framed. If at that time they agree that there should be a complete separation, that this should not form part of the autonomous area, we would have had no objection to carrying out their wishes. Therefore, it is no use blaming the Drafting Committee for doing something which it was not advised to do. That is my first submission. Paragraph 16-A embodies the concrete conclusions of the Drafting Committee and of the three representatives of Assam, including Mr. Chaliha, who for the first time raised the matter of the Dimapur area.
Shri Kuladhar Chaliha : May I submit that I was asked to go there as an Adviser and to see. I never felt that I was a member of the Drafting Committee and you will not find my name there.
Mr. President : No one has suggested tht you were a member of the Drafting Committee. He has said that you were present.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : That is his opinion. There is a further point to be made, namely under amendment 99 which gives power to the Governor to alter boundaries, to diminish areas and so on. It would be perfectly possible for the Governor to server any area, exclude any area from the area now to be included in he autonomous area. If that is not clear, the Drafting Committee would be quite prepared to include an express clause to that effect. But I do like to say that it is very unfortunate, to put it in the very mildest terms possible, that representatives should come to a conference, agree to certain agreement, and then resile from that agreement, bring in amendments and make it a point to comment against the Drafting Committee and say that they have done something which is either contrary to the wishes of the representatives……
Shri Kuladhar Chaliah : No.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I am very sorry. All I can…
Shri Kuladhar Chaliha : No, no.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : I am very sorry. Therefore, so far as paragraph 16-A is concerned, it provides separation for the purpose of political requirements. If complete separation is wanted I submit it is already provided for in the paragraph we have passed. If it does not do that, I am prepared to add a clause to make that ting quite clear that the Governor will have power to exclude any area if he thinks fit. so far as my amendment contained in new paragraph 19 is concerned I believe that all points of controversy have been answered.
Now, Sir, I propose to deal with my honourable Friend Mr. Kunzru's amendment which is for the addition of another paragraph. It will be noticed tht his amendment is nothing but a repetition of paragraph 5 of the Fifth Schedule which has already been passed and which deals with tribal areas or scheduled areas in States other than Assam. There is nothing more in his amendment than this. My submission as against his amendment is this: so far as sub-clause (1) of his new paragraph is concerned, it is quite unnecessary. It is governed by paragraph 123(b) of the Sixth Schedule which gives the Governor the power either to apply or not to apply or if apply with modifications laws made by Parliament or laws made by the Legislature of Assam. Therefore, tht provision is absolutely unnecessary, and is already contained in our Draft.
With regard to the second sub-clause (2), the position is this. It is quite true that so far as the Fifth Schedule is concerned, we do give the Governor the power to make regulations in respect of that area, but we do not propose to give that power to the Governor in the case of the Sixth Schedule. It is for this reason tht in the case of the Fifth Schedule the tribes have no authority to make any regulations for themselves, but in the case of the Sixth Schedule, we have given the district council and the regional council the right to make laws in certain respects. It seems to me, therefore, that where the tribes have not been given the power to make regulations it is necessary to give the power to the Governor to make regulations it seems to me tht conferring powers upon the Governor to make similar regulations is utterly superfluous. That is the reason why we do not propose to give the power to the Governor so far as the Sixth Schedule is concerned. I therefore submit that his amendment is quite unnecessary.
There is one other point which I would like to make quite clear. The power to make regulations which it is proposed to give to the District Council under the Sixth Schedule is not a new power at all. As a matter of fact there exists now in Assam certain regulations which give the tribes the same power of making regulations which we are giving by our Schedule. The Schedule therefore is not anything new. It is merely continuing the existing position, namely, that the tribes have the power now to make regulations in certain matters. Therefore, for the reasons, I have explained his amendment is quite unnecessary. I therefore opposeit.
Mr. President : I was going to suggest tht there is really not as much difference in the viewpoints expressed here as would appear from the discussion that we have had. As I have followed Dr. Ambedkar's statement, I believe tht if two suggestions are accepted, probably much of the differences will disappear. I was going to suggest therefore tht he should include clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10 in the proviso.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : If we leave it to the Drafting committee it will do that.
Mr. President : I was going to suggest that we add to clause (b) of sub-paragraph (3) in amendment No.99, after the words "diminish the area of an autonomous district" the words "or exclude any area from an autonomous district." This would cover all the points.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : That we are quite prepared to do.
Mr. President : I find this difficulty. Most of the Members of the House including myself are not acquainted with the local situation and are therefore not in a position to take any definite line of our own with regard to Assam. We have to be guided by friends from there. Since there is difference in some respects among them, our position becomes very difficult. I would therefore suggest that it would be best to leave the thing to be dealt with by the local Government. The suggestions which I have made will enable the local Government to deal with this matte. I understand that Dr. Ambedkar has no objection to the two suggestions I have made.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : No, Sir, I am prepared to add 10(2) (d) to the proviso and also add, `power to exclude' in the other case.
Mr. President : I think that will satisfy the friends from Assam.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : I do not understand your proposal. Sir.
Mr.President : My first proposal is that, in the proviso which Dr. Ambedkar has moved to sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 19, add the words in paragraph 10(2) (d).
Shri T.T. Krishnamachari (Madras : General) : It will read like this:
"Clause (d) of sub-paragraph 2 of paragraph 10, be added."
Pandit Hirday Nath Kunzru : What was your suggestion, Sir?
Mr. President : It is to insert the following in paragraph 19 :-
19."Exclude any area from Pat 1 of the suggested Table."
Please turn to amendment No. 99 which we have already passed.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : In the proviso to clause (2) the proposal is to exclude.
Mr. President : No; to include the words "sub-clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10" after the words "paragraph 8".
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : The difficulty is only here. Already the power has been given to the local Government to stop any regulation made by the District Council from having effect. The local government has already been given the power to stop any law from having effect which is passed by the District Council for the regulation and control of money-lending, within the district. Sub-paragraph (3) of paragraph 10 reads :
"All regulations made under this paragraph shall be submitted forthwith to the Governor, and until assented to by him shall have no effect."
If we give power now to the Governor to exclude any area it will be too wide.
Mr. President : That is not the position.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : My whole point is that power has already been given to the local government when we have provided that "All regulations made under this paragraph (by the District Council) shall be submitted forthwith to the Governor, and until assented to by him shall have no effect."
Mr. President : What paragraph is that?
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : It is amendment No. 125 by Dr. Ambedkar :
"That after sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10, the following sub-paragraph be added :-
"(3) All regulations made under this paragraph shall be submitted forthwith to the Governor, and until assented to by him shall have no effect."
That covers everything, Sir. I am not agreeable to the powers of the Governor being made too wide.
Mr. President : The proposal is different under paragraph 19.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : I do not see any reason why you should put under paragraph 19 a matter which is already covered by paragraph 10.
Mr. President : The idea is to put in "sub-clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10" not the whole of paragraph 10.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : What is the use of putting it here in this proviso? It is already there under paragraph 10.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : Sub-clause (d) of sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph 10 covers only trading, not money-lending. That is what is sought to be included.
Mr. President : As regards the question of exclusion, it was in the original draft.
The Honourable Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : Mr. Nichols-Roy, it is all right. I do not think you stand to lose anything.
The Honourable Rev. J.J.M. Nichols-Roy : I am asking you whether or not you are going to put in the text an amendment to the effect giving power to Governor to exclude any area of an autonomous district.
The Ambedkar Dr. B.R. Ambedkar : "Exclude" also we are giving. To "diminish" means really "exclude".
Mr. President : "Diminish" means "exclude".