Need to give state’s freedom fighters due place in history: CM

YAGRUNG, 13 Aug: “Arunachal Pradesh has its own share of freedom fighters, and we have to trace them and their families, so that they can be given their due place in the history of India,” said Chief Minister Pema Khandu during a programme organised here in East Siang district as part of the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign on Saturday.

Earlier, the CM unfurled the tricolour and paid rich tributes to Matmur Jamoh, one of the unsung heroes of India’s freedom struggle.

As per records, Matmur Jamoh killed British officer Williamson in Komsing village, while another band of his followers killed one Dr Gregorson in Pangi, both in East Siang district, on 31 March, 1911.

However, Jamoh died in obscurity and very few records are available of his last days at the Cellular Jail, where he was sent after he surrendered along with some others a few months later, unable to hide any longer in the face of an intense operation called the Abor Expedition of 1911-12 launched by the British.

Recalling the brave stance of Jamoh and fellow Adis of the area against the British expansion, Khandu said, “As India celebrates its 75th year of independence, it is high time to remember, honour and give due recognition to all unsung heroes who contributed to India’s freedom struggle.”

He informed that a state-level committee headed by Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein has been constituted “to research and document Arunachal’s role and contribution in the freedom struggle.”

Khandu disclosed that “80 percent work on the documentation has been completed, which was recently approved by the state cabinet for onward submission to concerned ministries in the central government.”

“Today, after much research, we know that there have been four wars between our indigenous Adi tribe members and the British. One occurred in 1858 at Kebang, second in 1859 at Rongtan, third in 1894 at Dambuk and the fourth at Komsing in 1911, which was led by Matmur Jamoh,” Khandu said.

He further informed that, not only the Adis of the central Arunachal belt but the Idu Mishmis, Wanchos, Singphos and the Khamptis in the east and the Akas in the west resisted the British and fought wars with them.

“These are being documented by the committee headed by Mein in partnership with Rajiv Gandhi University. We already have a list of 60 unsung heroes, including Matmur Jamoh of the Adi tribe. The list of names has been already forwarded to the central government for recognition. In total, at least 157 names of unsung heroes have been documented so far. I believe the list will go up as the documentation process reaches final stages,” he said.

The CM paid rich tributes to the unsung heroes.

“Because of them, our land could never be occupied by the British despite several attempts,” he said.

The CM further informed that the state government has sanctioned Rs 30.71 crore for a road connecting the area with Pasighat. He requested the people not to compromise with the road’s quality and facilitate its unhindered construction and completion.

Responding to a few requests, Khandu assured to have a musup constructed in Yagrung, a circle headquarters, and a police outpost in the area.

He also felicitated relatives and family members of Matmur Jamoh.

Also present on the occasion were MP Tapir Gao, MLAs Kaling Moyong, Kento Jini, Ojing Tasing and Ninong Ering, Chief Secretary Dharmendra and officials of the district administration. (CM’s PR Cell)