ATSU asks govt to ensure demographic safety of indigenous people

Staff Reporter
ITANAGAR, Sep 14: Jolted by the Centre’s decision to grant citizenship to Chakmas and Hajongs, the students’ community of Chakma-Hajong refugee affected areas asked the state government to ensure demographic safety of the indigenous people.
Expressing concern over the NDA Government’s latest move, the All Tangsa Students Union (ATSU) on Thursday stated that with granting of citizenship to Chakmas and Hajongs, the existence of Indigenous people are at stake.
In a press conference held this morning at the Press Club, ATSU Advisor Mengpa Haisa appealed to the governments – both at the centre and the state, to ensure the demographic safety of indigenous people of Changlang and Namsai districts.
“Our indigenous people are outnumbered by refugees, and we are pushed to the hills. Now they have started encroaching Namdapha National Park too”, said Haisa, expressing grave concern over ramifications of granting citizenships.
The ATSU advisor claimed that unofficial total population of Chakmas and Hajongs is believed to be more than four lakhs. However, it shows only one lakh in official records. It is said that indigenous Tangsa community has only 34, 000 in total population.
Haisa further casted apprehension that with the clearance from the Centre, the Chakmas and Hajongs would sense the prospect of vast unused forestland and this would create more influx. The ATSU added that if the state government fails to act on time to find a mechanism to fix the vexed issue, the indigenous people would become refugees in their own land.
On reasons for ineffective dealing with the refugee issue in the district, Haisa said that the government becomes minority in their areas, adding that the size of police personnel and handful of administrators are often outnumbered by Chakmas and Hajongs.
The union also appealed to the Centre to shun religious politics by making Arunachal Pradesh a dumping ground for refugees.