The decision of the All Nyishi Students’ Union (ANSU) to defer its proposed 36-hour capital bandh on 6 December is a welcome announcement. The union had announced the bandh as the second phase of its agitation against the government for allegedly failing to fulfil its demand for transfer of Education Commissioner Niharika Rai and withdrawal of the FIR registered against ANSU’s members. The decision to defer the bandh came about after Chief Minister Pema Khandu through an official letter expressed desire to resolve the issue by conducting a meeting with the central executive members of the ANSU on 13 December. Both the ANSU and the state government have exhibited maturity by agreeing to hold a meeting to resolve the issue.
Bandh calls in the state capital have become a big hindrance to projecting Itanagar as a modern cosmopolitan town. Across the world, people are abandoning the bandh culture as it has often been found to be counter-productive. The fear of breakdown of law and order remains high during bandh calls. The people of the state will be hoping that the concerns raised by the ANSU are resolved during its meeting with CM Pema Khandu. Both parties should look for a middle ground in order to end the impasse. If the issue remains unresolved for a longer period, it can potentially create a tense situation in the state.