Govt to grant citizenship to Chakmas, Hajong refugees

13-09-2017
DH

The Chakma-Hajong refugee issue was discussed threadbare today at a high level meeting convened by Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and attended by Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu, Union Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju and National Security Advisor Ajit Doval among others.

In 2015, the Supreme Court had directed the Central government to grant citizenship to the Chakma and Hajong refugees, mostly staying in Arunachal Pradesh.

"The Supreme Court order on Chakmas and Hajongs was discussed in the meeting.

We need to implement the order as early as possible," a home ministry official said.

Several organisations and civil society in Arunachal Pradesh have been opposing citizenship to the refugees saying it would change the demography of the state.

The Centre is trying to find a workable solution to the issue by proposing that Chakma and Hajong refugees will not be given rights, including ownership of land, enjoyed by Scheduled Tribes in Arunachal Pradesh, the official said.

However, they may be given Inner Line permits, required for non-locals in Arunachal Pradesh to travel and work.

Chakmas and Hajongs were originally residents of Chittagong Hill Tracts in the erstwhile East Pakistan. They left their homeland when it was submerged by the Kaptai dam project in the 1960s.

The Chakmas, who are Buddhists, and the Hajongs, who are Hindus, also allegedly faced religious persecution and entered India through the then Lushai Hills district of Assam (now Mizoram).

The Centre moved the majority of them to the North East Frontier Agency (NEFA), which is now Arunachal Pradesh.

According to officials, their numbers have gone up from about 5,000 in 1964-69 to one lakh. At present, they don’t have citizenship and land rights but are provided basic amenities by the state government.

The Arunachal Pradesh government approached the apex court to review its 2015 order but in vain. After the Supreme Court’s rejection, both the Central and state governments started consultations to find a solution to the issue.

The initiative on the Chakma and Hajong refugees comes amid the ongoing row over the Central government’s plans to deport Rohingya Muslims, who came to India due to alleged persecution in Myanmar.

Rijiju, who belongs to Arunachal Pradesh, has said Rohingyas were illegal immigrants.

He also said that India absorbed the maximum number of refugees in the world.

On Monday, in Geneva, UN human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein flayed any attempts by India to deport Rohingyas to Myanmar when the ethnic minority community was facing violence in their country.

Write your Comments on this Article

Disclaimer: Please write your correct name and email address. Kindly do not post any personal, abusive, defamatory, infringing, obscene, indecent, discriminatory or unlawful or similar comments. Konkanworld.com will not be responsible for any defamatory message posted under this article. Please note that under 66A of the IT Act, sending offensive or menacing messages through electronic communication service and sending false messages to cheat, mislead or deceive people or to cause annoyance to them is punishable. It is obligatory on Konkanworld.com to provide the IP address and other details of senders of such comments, to the authority concerned upon request. Hence, sending offensive comments using Konkanworld.com will be purely at your own risk, and in no way will Konkanworld.com be held responsible. Similarly, Konkanworld.com reserves the right to edit / block / delete the messages without notice any content received from readers.

  • Konkan World
  • Stay Connected
  • Facebook Google+ Twitter YouTube

KONKAN WORLD offers accurate, up-to-date, a large collection of videos from KONKAN WORLD VIDEOS and indulge in fun you will not find else where!.
© Copyright 2014 Konkanworld media Inc