The battle ahead

Monday Musing

[ M Doley ]
The mass movement against the refugees in Arunachal Pradesh gained force after the state government contested the centre’s decision to grant citizenship to Chakmas and Hajongs in line with the Supreme Court directive.
The state government often accused of not fighting the case vigorously in the court that led the case to present dire situation, on Friday has finally come up with a decision that the rights of indigenous people of the state will not be compromised at any cost.
“The state is not ready to accept any infringement of the Constitutional protection bestowed on the tribal people of the state,” the Chief Minister wrote to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
The centre’s move to grant citizenship to Chakmas and Hajongs came aftermath of the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill, 2016, which proposes to make foreign illegal migrants, who are Hindus, Sikhs, Buddhists and Christians eligible for Indian citizenship.
The million dollar question is, “Will the centre pay heed to the concern raised by the state government”?
It is unlikely that any state will roll out red carpet for the refugees even if they are deported from Arunachal by evolving a policy.
The silver lining is–the people of the state are united on the issue and they must be.
A brief conversation between two government employees on the day of AAPSU’s recent state bandh speaks volume about people’s concern over the burning issue.
A: Did you go to office today?
B: No. I did not.
A: (In a lighter vain) Your salary of one day will be deducted for not attending office.
B: I don’t care. I will feel proud if I can sacrifice a day’s salary for the cause of the people and the state.
This is just a small example of how the people have now become aware ever than before about the refugee issue and the adverse situation the state is likely to face in future in case the refugees are given permanent settlement in the state along with citizenship rights in line with the court directive.
Since the ball is now in the centre’s court, the state government must do more home exercises on the issue to bring the vexed issue to a logical conclusion.
The people’s representatives in the Parliament from the state too have got a great role to play and to show that they are not least bothered about the issue and the welfare of indigenous people of the state.
The actual battle has begun now!