Shylla urges PM, Gandhi to sack Kyndiah from ministerial post

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Shillong, Feb 14 (UNI) Rebel Congress leader in Meghalaya H S Shylla today urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi to sack Union Tribal Affairs Minister P R Kyndiah for not upholding tribal laws.

'' I appealed to the Prime Minister and Sonia Gandhi to sack Mr Kyndiah from the post of Union Minister for Tribal Affairs for not upholding rules and norms of the tribal laws,'' Mr Shylla told reporters after filing his nomination papers as an Independent candidate from Nongkrem constituency.

The tussle between the Kyndiahs and Mr Shylla heated up after the Congress high command allowed junior Kyndiah to contest the March 3 Assembly poll from Nongkrem, reserved seat for Scheduled Tribe.

The Congress leader was sacked a fortnight ago as leader of the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council for questioning the 'tribal status' of Mr Kyndiah's son Waibha K Kyndiah for taking his father P R Kyndiah's surname, violating the Khasi matrilineal system.

In Meghalaya, the Khasi, Jaintia and Garo communities follow the matrilineal system wherein the surname is traced from the mother's side.

According to Mr Shylla, junior Kyndiah had violated Sections 10 and 3 (1) of the Khasi Social Custom of Lineage Act, 1997, which is meant to uphold the tribal customary law of the Khasi.

Quoting the Sections of the Act, the rebel Congress said, ''A Khasi shall cease to be a Khasi, if he does not follow the Khasi matrilineal system. '' In addition to this, the junior Kyndiah also violated Section 3(1) of the Act, which stated that '' A person whose parents belong to the Khasi community will have to have his mother's surname.'' Therefore, he said, the junior had clearly violated the tribal law.

The Union Minister, however, said his son Waibha Kyndiah is a tribal Khasi and did violate any act. ''I am a Khasi, my wife is a Khasi and so is my son,'' Mr Kyndiah had said.

Mr Kyndiah asserted that Mr Shylla's argument was politically motivated.

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