The Modi government is considering demands to provide more autonomy to 16 autonomous district councils (ADCs) in north-east India.
Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) Chief Executive member Radha Charan Debbarma met Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday and discussed issues related to the ADCs.
"We have been demanding more powers and autonomy for ADCs. Rajnath Singh assured us that the central government was considering all aspects, including more autonomy to these bodies," Debbarma told IANS over phone from New Delhi.
He was accompanied by Lok Sabha member Jitendra Chowdhury and TTAADC Executive member Rajendra Reang.
He said they urged the Home Minister to call a meeting of all ADCs in north-eastern states to discuss pending and important issues.
The ADCs have been set up to ensure socio-economic development of tribals, who make up 27-28 per cent of the region's population of around 45 million.
Of these, six ADCs are in Manipur, three each in Assam, Meghalaya and Mizoram and one in Tripura.
"We also sought more power and autonomy to village committees under the ADCs. The gram panchayats outside ADCs jurisdiction now enjoy more power."
Debbarma rued that the NITI Aayog had reduced funds for ADCs in 2016.
The TTTAADC was formed in 1987 to protect and safeguard the political, economic and cultural interests of the tribals. The tribal council sprawls over two thirds of Tripura's territory.