Guwahati: The Chakma District Congress Committee (CDCC) of Mizoram has appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “restrain” Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju from raising “communal ill-feelings against Chakmas and Hajongs”.
The CDCC requested the PM to intervene and stop Rijiju from repeatedly suggesting relocation of the Chakmas and Hajongs of Arunachal Pradesh, 60 years after their resettlement in the Northeastern state.
“The Chakmas and Hajongs did not go to Arunachal Pradesh on their own. It was the Government of India which took them there during 1964-1968 in the aftermath of the Indo-China war. India wanted loyal Chakmas and Hajongs,” the CDCC memorandum to the PM states.
In a video of a regional reporter asking him to comment on the Chakma-Hajong issue, the Union Law Minister could be seen saying, “Everybody has found out about Chakmas and Hajongs. Now whatever weight was upon us, we want to relieve ourselves of that. Okay, they have come in 1964, now there is no use of going and blaming Nehru Ji.”
“The Citizenship Amendment Act that we have passed… it is clearly mentioned there, that be it Chakmas, Hajongs or any other refugees for that matter, they will not get any permanent status in Arunachal Pradesh. We are a tribal state, our population is very small, we cannot dilute our identity,” the minister says in the video.
On January 9, 1996, the Supreme Court had already ordered processing the citizenship applications of these two communities, stated the CDCC in its memorandum.
The committee also alleged that for the last 57 years, even basic humanitarian facilities were not given to the two communities, and whatever provided was also snatched.
They said Rijiju had also said that it has been clearly communicated to the Chakmas and Hajongs that they will be respectfully relocated and that they will not be given place in Arunachal Pradesh.
Besides the PM, the CDCC has sought the intervention of Congress president Sonia Gandhi against the proposed relocation of the Chakmas and Hajongs.
“Although the matter is in Arunachal Pradesh, we are showing our solidarity with the Chakmas in Arunachal. We have sent a copy of the memorandum to Sonia Gandhi Ji and sought her intervention because the judgement has been given by the Supreme Court. And at this juncture, it is democracy being questioned and doubted,” CDCC general secretary Victor Talukdar Chakma, told EastMojo.
“We sought her intervention so rule of law can be maintained and the apex court’s judgement is respected, especially Kiren Rijiju being the Union Minister of Law. His statements are creating anti-Chakma Hajong sentiments in the state,” added the General Secretary of the district unit of the political group.
On being asked about the gravity of the situation, Victor Talukdar Chakma said, “The Chakmas form a very small community, hardly a lakh or more people. Some of these videos, including the one on my Facebook page, has over 20,000 views which is a matter of grave concern to the community.”
In another statement given to Arunachal Express by the Union Law Minister that the CDCC General Secretary termed problematic was in which the minister said that a significant number of people from these communities, who were previously refugees, have settled in the state of Arunachal.
“If Chakmas and Hajongs continue to reside within the state, there will be continuous tension. There will only be a solution if we do this (relocation) in a planned manner,” the minister has said.
Rijiju also reportedly said that Union Home Minister Amit Shah was closely monitoring the situation with respect to the relocation and identification of locations.
The CDCC said that instead of implementing the judgment of the Supreme Court, the dubious suggestion to relocate the Chakmas and Hajongs almost 60 years after their migration is inhuman, illegal and unconstitutional.
This will not only be questioned by the Supreme Court but also the international community, the CDCC said in their memorandum.
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