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Surprisingly, there have been no protests, rallies or sign of a civil movement by the people of Arunachal over the Naga political talks that might have any ramifications on the state’s territory
Surprisingly, there have been no protests, rallies or sign of a civil movement by the people of Arunachal over the Naga political talks that might have any ramifications on the state’s territory|Representational image
ARUNACHAL PRADESH

Naga talks: Why is Arunachal mum on ‘territorial integrity’ issue?

At a time when neighbouring Assam & Manipur are launching civil movements against any deal that may compromise territorial integrity, Arunachal is unexpectedly quiet

Irani Sonowal Lepcha

Irani Sonowal Lepcha

Itanagar: When states like Assam and Manipur are launching civil movements where series of mass protests have been taking place against any deal that compromises the territorial integrity of the state due to the agreement between Centre and the NSCN-IM, Arunachal Pradesh is unexpectedly mum.

Surprisingly, there have been no protests, no rallies or no sign of a civil movement by the people of Arunachal especially from the denizens of Tirap, Changlang and Longding which will be affected the most.

However, the All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union (AAPSU) on Saturday made it clear that any agreement between the Centre and the NSCN-IM should not affect the state and its people in any way.

The union said that it would oppose any attempt to change the boundary of the State and administrative interference while sealing the final solution.

The APPSU has further asked the Arunachal Pradesh government, all the 60 legislators, three MPs and the political parties to make their stand on the issue clear.

EastMojo contacted a few legislators from Tirap, Changlang and Longding (TCL) region, to know their opinion on the ongoing Naga talks:

“When 11 people including my husband who was a sitting MLA (Late Tirong Aboh) got killed in broad day light, who will dare to come out and speak. Since 1998, people of Tirap, Longding and Changlang have seen so many incidents where in their loved ones were kidnapped and killed. May be it is because of the fear psychosis that the people didn’t come out on the streets to protest against the territorial integrity.”
Chakat Aboh
MLA, Khonsa West

“Centre has given us assurance that the talks won’t affect Arunachal’s territorial integrity. Tirap Changlang Longding People’s Forum (TCLPF) is working on this matter on our behalf and they are in talks with the Centre.”
Laisam Simai
MLA, Nampong

“They (NSCN-IM) have never asked us or have included us in any of the discussions so far therefore it is very difficult for us to comment on this particular topic. It’s better not to speak.”
Tesam Pongte
MLA, Changlang North

“We do have our opinion but we cannot speak out in certain cases. We are living here peacefully under government of India’s umbrella and at this point in time I have nothing to say. People from TCL region not protesting don’t mean that they are in support. Rather we the people of TCL area have thoughts which are inside our heart but we cannot express.”
Somlung Mossang
MLA, Bordumsa-Diyun

“Parties involved in Naga talks, they know each other’s limitations and difficulties very well. We (people of TCL area) are very confident that both the parties will not hurt our sentiments. The sense of fear and concerns of the people of TCL region have already been highlighted before the centre and now, we are looking forward for peace and prosperity in the region through the talk.”
Gabriel D Wangsu
MLA, Kanubari

EastMojo’s efforts to speak with other legislators from TCL region failed as they did not respond to our calls. Those lawmakers include Kamlung Mossang (MLA, Miao), Wangki Lowang (MLA, Namsang), Tanpho Wangnaw (MLA, Longding-Pumao), Honchun Ngandam (MLA, Pongchau-Wakka) and Wanglin Lowangdong (MLA, Borduria-Bogapani).