AAPSU seeks tabling of offspring issue in budget session

ITANAGAR, Jan 28: The All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union (AAPSU) on Tuesday reminded the state government to table in the coming budget session the issue of offspring of APST mothers and non-APST fathers availing APST benefits in the state, stating that the union would otherwise be “compelled to go for democratic means during the session.”
Saying that “the people are eager and hopeful” that the state government would bring the matter up in the budget session, AAPSU president Hawa Bagang said the chief minister had categorically assured an AAPSU delegation in December 2019 that the matter would be tabled in the budget session.
AAPSU general secretary Tobom Dai said the union has taken up the offspring issue as “it is becoming a threat to the indigenous population of the state.”
The union had earlier urged the state government to constitute an empowered study group to look into the matter and decide the quantum of punishment to be fixed for those issuing APST certificates to such individuals.
In its representation to the state government, the AAPSU drew attention to numerous cases of such persons “availing APST and other benefits exclusively meant for the indigenous communities of Arunachal Pradesh.”
Highlighting the modus operandi employed by certain sections of non-local businessmen with regard to landholding and other matters in the state, the AAPSU in its representation wrote: “After marrying local women, these people purchase land and other movable/ immovable assets in their wives’ name. These wives surprisingly never change and adopt their husband’s surname. In case their son/daughter is married again to a local, the entire property is transferred to their APST daughter-/son-in-law. This vicious circle has been going on in numerous parts of the state.”
Calling for a concrete mechanism to be put in place to tackle what it termed a “growing menace slowly destabilizing the socio-cultural fabric of the state,” the union sought introduction of appropriate laws in the state assembly to look into the offspring issue for “the safety and securing the lives of the indigenous in the long run.”
In a press release on Tuesday evening, the AAPSU said it is pursuing the state government to bring up “appropriate law in the state assembly on the issue of children of APST mother and non-APST father enjoying full benefits as an APST after a resolution taken during a state level consultative meeting with all the community-based organisations in September 2018.”
It said “the matter has not been taken up seriously in the government level as yet.”