Showing posts with label Arunachal Pradesh. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Arunachal Pradesh. Show all posts
23 September 2015

Shrugging off Chinese ‘concerns’, Modi govt allows US search missions of B-24 aircraft in Arunachal Pradesh

New Delhi, Sep 23
: The eight-member crew of 'Hot as Hell' may get the posthumous honour that they deserve. The US B-24 bomber disappeared in Arunachal Pradesh on a supply run from Kunming, China, to Chabua, Assam, on January 25, 1944, with an eight-member crew on board.

The chances of their remains being recovered have vastly improved with the Modi government allowing the US military to resume search missions in Arunachal Pradesh for the remains of servicemen who died in World War II. That marks a reversal from the position of the United Progressive Alliance regime, which had halted such operations in the northeastern state in 2009 over "concerns" raised by China.

Specialised teams from the US, trained to identify and transport the remains of its soldiers who have fallen in combat throughout the world, are expected to visit several identified sites in Arunachal.

Many American planes crashed in Arunachal Pradesh during the war while on supply missions into China. An estimated 416 aircrew are missing in India from the war. Most are believed to have gone down in Arunachal as transport planes battled bad weather and the Himalayas — a treacherous route known as 'The Hump' — to cross into China in support of the war against Japan.

"Specialised identification and recovery teams from the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) will arrive in India shortly to search for Americans that remain unaccounted for from World War II," a US Embassy spokesperson told ET. (POW/MIA stands for prisoner of war/missing in action.) The US has engaged in recovery missions across the world to bring back its war dead but efforts in Arunachal hit a roadblock after the UPA government put a stop to it in 2009, reasoning that the territory was sensitive due to "strategic, internal political, ecological and anthropological reasons". However, recovery missions in other parts of India have continued.


The Arunachal Pradesh curb was lifted after a fresh request was made by the US to the Modi government. That's come as a big relief to family members of the war dead who have been pushing for this.

"The Embassy of the United States of America and DPAA worked with the government of India to coordinate this opportunity for the agency to work in Arunachal Pradesh, searching for US personnel missing from World War II," the spokesperson said. Officials said the Modi government found the previous administration's reasoning invalid.

China claims the territory of Arunachal Pradesh for itself and several of the crash sites are close to the border. Officials familiar with the matter said operations were halted in 2009 largely due to objections raised by China against allowing US military teams into the state.

Family members of the WW II missing in Arunachal Pradesh had come together to lobby for lifting the ban.

"While this moratorium has been in effect, at least two relatives of the Arunachal missing have died, including a nephew of 'Hot as Hell' co-pilot Sheldon Chambers and a brother of bombardier Robert Eugene Oxford," Gary Zaetz, who leads the grouping, told ET. The B-24's crew included Gary's uncle Irwin Zaetz. The crash site of the aircraft in Arunachal was only discovered in December 2006.
28 August 2015

Top Court Stays High Court Order for CBI Probe Against Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister

Top Court Stays High Court Order for CBI Probe Against Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister
Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki.
New Delhi, Aug 28 :  In a relief to Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Nabam Tuki, the Supreme Court today stayed the Gauhati High Court order for a CBI probe into corruption allegations related to his tenure as Public Works Department Minister in 2006.

A three-judge bench headed by Chief Justice H L Dattu also issued notice to the CBI and others on the chief minister's plea against the August 21 order of the high court.

The bench, also comprising justices V Gopala Gowda and Amitava Roy, granted the relief after senior advocate Harish Salve raised the matter.

Mr Tuki is alleged to have influenced the Arunachal Pradesh government to give some contractual works to his relatives as PWD minister in 2006.

"Majority of the said contracts were of Kendriya Vidyalayas of Government of India at Shillong, Kolkata and Rohtak, Haryana and another one was House Keeping in newly constructed Arunachal House in Delhi and two other small contracts in the state capital of Arunachal Pradesh," the petition said while listing out the allegations against Mr Tuki.

The CM has alleged that high court acted in a "hot and haste manner" and got all the PILs transferred from Itanagar bench to principal bench at Guwahati.

"The present SLP raises important questions as to whether the high court without hearing the parties should have passed an order ordering a CBI enquiry into various ten-year-old contracts, which have already been completed," the petition said.

Earlier on August 21, the high court had ordered CBI to register a case in this matter after it found that Mr Tuki had abused his official position as a minister in awarding contracts to his wife, sister-in- law, brother and other relatives without calling tenders years back.

It had directed the probe agency to conduct a probe against Mr Tuki, besides Kendriya Vidyalay Sangathan, New Delhi, and the Director of Sports Council, Arunachal Pradesh, in this regard.

The high court had said that an FIR should be lodged and the final report submitted before the special court at Guwahati.
24 August 2015

Arunachal Pradesh to sign MoUs for boosting bamboo sector

Itanagar, Aug 24 : Arunachal Pradesh will soon ink Memorandum of Understandings (MoUs) with Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL) and Hindustan Paper Corporation to help potential bamboo growers in the state.

Arunachal Pradesh Bamboo Resource Development Agency (APBRDA) Vice-chairman Yora Tagung informed that the agency on behalf of the state government would sign an MoU with NRL soon for exporting three lakh tonnes of bamboo from the state.

"The MoU will immensely help both farmers as well as unemployed youths of the state," he said.

He informed that another MoU would also be signed between the state government and the Hindustan Paper Corporation for exporting one lakh tonne of bamboo for paper manufacturing.

"This is just a beginning. We are looking for more companies with whom we can sign MoUs for the benefit of bamboo growers and unemployed youths and enrich the state's coffer," Yora said.

If properly tapped , bamboo sector could be a money spinner for the state with a varieties of species abundantly available, Yora said adding that the Board was planning to set up small scale bamboo industries in every district where toothpicks, incense sticks, besides other usable items would be produced.

The APBRDA is contemplating to establish a bamboo shoot market for which a land of 70,000 square meters has already been allotted.

"We are also planning to set up a Bamboo Technology Park and State Bamboo Museum in the same plot," he said.

The steps taken by the Board would immensely benefit the people by spreading awareness regarding the actual benefit of bamboo plant, he said and added that the proposed MoUs would be a boon for the bamboo growers of the state.

It is pertinent to mention here that since last couple of years, the APBRDA has been supplying bamboo saplings to the bamboo growers of all districts of the state.

Besides, several skill development and awareness programmes were also conducted.

"Though we have many bamboo plantations in every district, merely three small industries have been established so far which have failed to cater to the bamboo growers," Yora added.
20 August 2015

All-Woman Bank in Arunachal

Tuki inaugurates branch, website

By Ranju Dodum

Nabam Tuki at the inauguration of the bank branch at Naharlagun. Telegraph picture
Itanagar, Aug 20 : The first "all-woman" bank branch was inaugurated in Arunachal Pradesh today, giving women cause to cheer.

Inaugurating the all-woman branch of the Arunachal Pradesh State Cooperative Apex Bank at Naharlagun, chief minister Nabam Tuki said the move was another stepping stone towards empowerment of women of the state.

He also inaugurated the bank's website and opened a savings account for his mother at the branch, which will be manned completely by women and also offer locker facilities to women.

According to the 2011 Census, Arunachal Pradesh has a female-male ratio of 938:1000, which is below the national average of 940. In 2001, the ratio was 893:1000.

Speaking to the bank's staff, Tuki said women self-help groups all over the state should be mobilised with the support of National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) to encourage them.

He also lauded the bank for introducing the micro ATM, which he said would act as a "game changer" allowing "even illiterate customers to avail its facilities".

Responding to a memorandum submitted by the bank's employees, Tuki admitted that there was a need to build a permanent head office for the bank. He said funds would be made available for the purpose in the next state budget.

The Arunachal Pradesh State Cooperative Apex Bank is the only financial institution run by the state government. The bank was revived by the state after it ran into financial trouble in 2007.
20 July 2015

MHA Declines to Share Information on AFSPA in Arunachal Pradesh

New Delhi, Jul 20 :  The Home Ministry has declined to share, under the RTI Act, the viewpoints of stakeholders on the declaration of districts in Arunachal Pradesh as disturbed area under the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), saying the information was classified which may effect sovereignty and integrity of the country.

"The viewpoints of the stakeholders on the declaration of all the districts in the state of Arunachal Pradesh, including Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts bordering the state of Assam, as 'disturbed area' under AFSPA are classified, and therefore, cannot be disclosed under Section 8(1)(a) of the RTI Act, 2005," it said in reply to an RTI query filed by Venkatesh Nayak of NGO Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI).

The Section bars "information, disclosure of which would prejudicially affect the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security, strategic, scientific or economic interests of the state, relation with foreign state or lead to incitement of an offence".

The Home Ministry also denied to give details of inputs and file notings pertaining to the decision to supersede a notification issued by it to impose AFSPA in the state citing the same clause.

The Ministry, however, said that it has not received any representation, petitions or submissions from anybody on opposing or supporting the notification.

It also declined to give details of documents or records submitted by the state governments of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura during 2014 to February 1, 2015, for seeking reimbursement of amount under the Security Related Expenditure (SRE) scheme.

"This is to inform that there is a scheme of SRE which covers all north east states except Mizoram and Sikkim. The SRE is reimbursed against the expenditure incurred for supporting security apparatus in the insurgency or militancy affected states.

"Since the details of SRE are sensitive in nature, the same is exempt under Para 8(a) of the RTI Act," the Ministry said.

The details of SRE reimbursement cannot be uploaded in the Ministry's official website. However, year-wise and state-wise expenditure released under SRE over the years is uploaded on MHA website, the reply said.
11 May 2015

Arunachal Tops in Opium Cultivation

New Delhi, May 11
: Arunachal Pradesh has emerged on the top among the illegal opium poppy producers in the country, ringing alarm bells among security agencies given its proximity with Myanmar and other nations notorious for cultivation of the contraband.

It is learnt that the state, which has geographic closeness with the “golden triangle” of Myanmar, Lao PDR and Thailand, infamous for opium and heroin production and trafficking, is being used by the international mafia, who are indulging in the illegal trade in the state where the climate is favourable for poppy cultivation, said a news agency quoting a report submitted to the Union home ministry.

“In 2012 we destroyed less than 400 acres of poppy in Arunachal, which jumped to 1,222 acres and 1,067 acres, respectively, in the next two years. The government is serious over the development,” NCB deputy director general (operations) Deb Jyoti Ray told the news agency.

Of the total 2,530 acres of poppy crop destroyed across the country by Narcotics Control Bureau during 2014-15, the sparsely populated state with a population of just 13.82 lakh, as per official figures, accounted for nearly 40 per cent with 1,067 acres. During 2013-14, of around the same acreage of poppy destroyed by NCB, 1,222 acres were in Arunachal Pradesh.
07 May 2015

Aapsu Leaders meet Rijiju, demand AFSPA rollback

Itanagar, May 7 : A team of All Arunachal Pradesh Students' Union (Aapsu), led by its president Kamta Lapung and NESO adviser Pritam Sonam, met Union minister of state for home affairs Kiren Rijiju in New Delhi on Sunday.

During the meeting, both Lapung and Sonam reviewed the 15-day of ultimatum submitted to Rijiju earlier on complete withdrawal of the Arms Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) from Arunachal Pradesh and discussed various perspectives of the Act and the Centre's attitude on its immediate rollback, said a press release.

Rijiju has reportedly accepted Aspsu's demands and informed the students' body that the Act was imposed in the state for a specified purpose and time.

While considering Aapsu's demands, the Union minister said that he has already rolled back the extension of AFSPA to nine districts.

However, it would remain in the state as it was in the 90s, but with a reduced radius of operation.

Rijiju further informed the students' body that AFSPA will be active in the state with the assistance of 16 police stations in the border areas.

Instructions have also been given to the paramilitary forces that even at the time of operation they cannot enter the house of any tribal person without consulting or taking help from the local gaon bura (village headman), panchayat member or any prominent citizen in the suspected areas, the release added.
05 May 2015

Rajnath promised to look into AFSPA withdrawal: AAPSU

Itanagar, May 5 : The All Arunachal Pradesh Student's Union (Aapsu) on Monday said Union home minister Rajnath Singh has promised to look into its demand for withdrawal of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act from Arunachal Pradesh.

An Aapsu team called on the minister at his New Delhi residence on Sunday and submitted a memorandum on the matter.

While the notification regarding the extension of AFSPA in nine districts (besides Tirap, Changlang and Longding) of the state has been kept in abeyance, Rajnath will discuss the issue with Union MoS for home Kiren Rijiju and a decision will be taken based on his (Rijiju's) wish and interpretation, Aapsu quoted Rajnath as saying in a press release on Monday.

President of the organization Kamta Lapung informed Singh that the strict customs of the tribes of Arunachal prevent illegal activities from taking place and, hence, the AFSPA is irrelevant there.

Coordinator of North East Students' Organization Pritam Sonam said, while the people of Arunachal are thankful to the Centre for inducting Rijiju as a junior minister, it is unfortunate that the AFSPA has been extended in a state that is an island of peace, the release added.
23 April 2015

Kiren Rijiju in Dock for Afspa Extension in Arunachal Pradesh

Kiren Rijiju

Guwahati, Mar 23
: With protest against the extension of Afspa Act getting louder in frontier state of Arunachal Pradesh, the role of Union minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju  has come under the scanner of the PMO.

Disclosing that decision was taken without any consultation with the state government and other security agencies, sources in the Centre said the home ministry is prepared to roll back their decision of extending Afspa in 12 bordering districts of Arunachal Pradesh, but looking for a face-saving escape route.
The protest became louder after three women of Jullang village accused that Armymen molested them on April 6. And, in reaction, Mr Rijiju tweeted, “It was a drama. Army is not even present in that area, forget about harassment”, to more embarrassment of the department.


The Centre’s decision to extend the enforcement of the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act, 1958, to 12 districts of Arunachal Pradesh bordering Assam and Nagaland, has sparked sharp reactions.

A consultative meeting organised by the All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union on AFSPA held in Itanagar has unanimously decided to constitute a Joint Coordination Committee to carry forward the movement against AFSPA.

The JCC spearheaded by AAPSU will comprise of leaders from various organisations, NGOs and prominent persons in the state. The committee will conduct state-wide awareness campaigns on AFSPA, followed by mass democratic movements, informed AAPSU leader Kamta Lapung.

The AAPSU will also submit a memorandum to the Arunachal Pradesh government and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh. Although the meeting welcomed the assurance given by Union Minister of State Home, Khiren Rijiju to partially roll back AFSPA from Arunachal Pradesh, JCC in coordination with the North East Students Organisation will continue to campaign for total repeal of the Act.

AFSPA has been in force in Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts of Arunachal
Pradesh up to 20 km inside from the inter-state boundary with Assam. But the latest decision of the Centre to extend AFSPA enforcement to 12 more districts of the state has angered the people of the state.

The Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh has stated that the Centre did not consult it before deciding on extending AFSPA to other districts.

A team of the state BJP led by president Tai Tagak met several senior party leaders, including MoS for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju in New Delhi to apprise them of the people’s stiff opposition to extension of the Act.
20 April 2015

Kiren Rijiju in Dock for Afspa extension in Arunachal Pradesh

Kiren Rijiju
Kiren Rijiju
Guwahati, Apr 20 With protest against the extension of Afspa Act getting louder in frontier state of Arunachal Pradesh, the role of Union minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju  has come under the scanner of the PMO.
Disclosing that decision was taken without any consultation with the state government and other security agencies, sources in the Centre said the home ministry is prepared to roll back their decision of extending Afspa in 12 bordering districts of Arunachal Pradesh, but looking for a face-saving escape route.
The protest became louder after three women of Jullang village accused that Armymen molested them on April 6. And, in reaction, Mr Rijiju tweeted, “It was a drama. Army is not even present in that area, forget about harassment”, to more embarrassment of the department.
16 April 2015

Ministry Of Home Affairs awaits Arunachal Opinion on AFSPA

By Manoj Anand

Guwahati, Apr 16 : The ministry of home affairs is waiting for the opinion of the Arunachal Pradesh government before reviewing its decision on extending the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) to the bordering district of Arunachal.

Disclosing that the frontier state was slowly turning out to be a safe sanctuary for many insurgent groups of Assam, security sources in the home ministry told this newspaper that it was done to rescue the peaceful districts of the frontier state from getting into the grip of insurgent activities.

Indicating that protest against the AFSPA in the frontier state was more political in nature, security sources said that many civil society groups of the frontier states had expressed deep concern over the growing activities of Naga rebels, forcing Arunachalee youth to take up arms.

Admitting that initially activity of the armed rebel groups was restricted to Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts, security sources said that insurgent groups have started spreading their activities across the state. In fact, the NDFB and Ulfa rebels were reported to have been serving extortion notices to Arunachal politicians, security sources said, adding that Arunachal Pradesh has also failed in strengthening the state police forces to take on heavily-armed insurgent groups.

Asserting that the AFSPA was extended to bordering districts of Arunachal Pradesh in order to enable security forces to chase and arrest insurgents crossing over from Assam to Arunachal Pradesh, security sources, however, said that in view of the protest of Arunachal Pradesh chief minister Nabam Tuki and home minister Tanga Byaling, the ministry is ready to review its decision.

“We are waiting for the opinion of Arunachal government in writing. If they are confident to handle the situation emerging in the frontier state, Centre may withdraw its order extending AFSPA in 12 bordering districts,” said a senior home ministry official.
14 April 2015

Arunachal Anti-Army act cry grows shriller

By Ranju Dodum and Khelen Thokchom

AAPSU members at the news conference

Itanagar/Imphal, April 14 : The clamour against the extension of the controversial Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act has been mounting in Arunachal Pradesh with student unions and political parties raising the pitch.
The All Arunachal Pradesh Student's Union (AAPSU) has termed the Union home ministry's decision to impose the army act along districts bordering Assam as a "murder of democracy." It said, "The implementation of AFSPA is not justified," and has planned a rally on Wednesday with a march to the Raj Bhavan. The same day, the People's Party of Arunachal will also stage a rally.

Extending support to AAPSU, North East Students Union (Neso) coordinator Pritam Bhai Sonam said, "We have tasted AFSPA, and in 2007, one person was shot dead by the army at Gumto near the capital while he was searching for his mithun." The mithun is Arunachal's state animal.

While chief minister Nabam Tuki has already made his displeasure over the decision known to Union home minister Rajnath Singh, the Arunachal Pradesh Congress Seva Dal chief organiser Kipa Kaha accused the army of indulging in illegal activities. Kaha alleged that army personnel have been "caught indulging in multi-million rupee drug trade as well as extorting the public."

The state unit of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) said implementing the AFSPA in the state would render its people "unsafe in the hands of the army."

While rival political parties have decried the Centre's move, the state BJP unit said it was taken due to failure of the state government to curb militant activity.

The act's implementation is limited to the 12 districts bordering Assam - West and East Kameng, Papum Pare, Lower Subansiri, West and East Siang, Lower Dibang Valley, Lohit, Namsai, Changlang, Longding and Tirap.

Yesterday, Union minister of state for home Kiren Rijiju, who hails from Arunachal himself, said he had "directed home ministry officials to review it and seek suggestions from the state government for alternative views".

Manipur support
Rights and student activists of Manipur, too, have extended support to the protest by the people of Arunachal Pradesh.

Two activists of the state, Babloo Loitongbam, the executive director of Human Rights Alert, and Neso secretary-general Sinam Prakash, will attend a series of discussions to protest the imposition of the act in Arunachal Pradesh, beginning on April 19.

The act has been in force in Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts of Arunachal Pradesh where various factions of the NSCN are active since 1991 after they were categorised disturbed areas. It was subsequently extended to a 20-km belt in districts that share borders with Assam.

"Prakash and I will take part in the deliberations on Arunachal Pradesh, beginning on April 19. This is to show our solidarity with the people of Arunachal Pradesh," Loitongbam said.

Manipur, which is already reeling under the impact of the act, has been most vocal in denouncing the act and is demanding its repeal.

Irom Sharmila, a human rights activist, has been fasting for nearly 15 years, demanding repeal of the act.

Her fast was triggered by the killing of 10 civilians by Assam Rifles troops at Malom in Imphal West in 2000, in retaliation to a militant attack.

"We show solidarity with the people of Arunachal Pradesh. Neso has been demanding all these years that the act should go. We strongly oppose the extension of the act in more areas of Arunachal Pradesh," Prakash said.

Arunachal AFSPA Decision Will Be Reviewed, Says Rijiju

Itanagar, Apr 14 : The Union minister of state for home affairs, Kiren Rijiju, on Sunday said he has instructed officials of his ministry to review the Centre's decision to impose the Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA) in 12 districts of Arunachal Pradesh. He said the officials will also seek the state government's views on the matter.

"I have directed the home ministry to review the decision and seek suggestions from the state government," he said in a statement. "The Union home ministry took the decision because the ongoing operation against NDFB-S and other outfits may not succeed if militants find a safe heaven in Arunachal," he added. "We are a democratic government. If the state government is uncomfortable with this step, we will honour their concern. Law and order is a state subject and the Union home ministry can only deal with national security by working closely with the state government," he explained.

Stating that the Centre would adhere to the spirit of cooperative federalism, Rijiju said he is in touch with Arunachal home minister Tanga Byaling. "Some modalities need to be worked out and the views of the state government have been sought. The fact remains, however, that rebels are working in the border areas of Arunachal," he said.

"I would like to appeal to both the state government and the residents to be alert about the movement of militants from outside the state entering Arunachal," he added.
13 April 2015

Delhi Has 'Silently Extended' Harsh AFSPA Act To My State: Arunachal CM

By Rupesh Dutta

New Delhi, Apr 13 : The union government has "silently extended" the Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA) to "entire state of Arunachal Pradesh" without consulting the state government and appears keen to deal with the insurgency in border areas on its own, state Chief minister Nabam Tuki has said.

Tuki said the central government could have tightened security in areas of the state that border Nagaland and Assam instead of extending the "harsh act in the entire state."
"The movement of insurgents is in these areas and not the mainland of Arunachal Pradesh," Tuki told in an interview during a visit here.

Tuki, who heads a Congress government in the state, said that there was an increase in the number of insurgent camps in areas bordering Nagaland and Assam but there has not been any increase in insurgent activity in other parts of the state.

"Can the Centre know better than the state government?" he asked.

AFSPA has been in force in Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts of Arunachal Pradesh since 1991 after they were categorized as disturbed areas. It was subsequently extended to a 20-km belt in districts that share borders with Assam.

The Bharatiya Janata Party-led central government, in an order last month, extended the controversial AFSPA to other areas of Arunchal Pradesh.

AFSPA grants special powers to the armed forces in areas declared "disturbed" including arrest without warrant of a person who has committed cognizable offence or is suspected to have done so. It allows them to enter and search any premises, to stop and search any vehicle reasonably suspected. It gives powers to personnel to fire upon those acting unlawfully for the maintenance of public order Tuki, 51, who is into his second term as chief minister, said that it was due to efforts of his government that insurgent outfits such as National Socialist Council of Nagalim (Issac-Muivah), United Liberation Front of Assam (Independent), National Democratic Front of Bodoland (NDFB) could not extend their reach in the state.

"The central government has not been able to understand that it is because of my government's efforts that insurgency has not been able to reach the mainland Arunachal Pradesh from the bordering areas," he said.

Tuki said "if the central government was aware of it, they would have have consulted Arunachal government (before extending AFSPA),"
Tuki said he had got to know of the extension of AFSPA in his state through media reports.

"I met Home Minister Rajnath Singh and urged him to reconsider it. It is the common people who will be affected. The central government should see the atmosphere in my state and then take a decision."
Tuki, who attended the 64th plenary meeting of the North East Council here, said that extension of AFSPA in the state has made people apprehensive.

"It has led to a panic among people and they fear that the situation will became similar to that in Manipur, where there have been several controversies regarding the AFSPA," Tuki said.

Asked about reasons for increase of camps in the bordering areas of Arunachal Pradesh, Tuki said that there were several reasons and both the state and Centre need to understand them in a spirit of mutual understanding.

"Arunachal Pradesh has been an island of peace. Never ever any insurgent group has emerged from the state. But several major and minor militant groups have indeed tried to infiltrate seeing the peaceful atmosphere in the state, he said.

Tuki said the Centre should reconsider its decision on AFSPA
"If they don't, I will tell the home ministry about the consequent problems," he said.

"I will wait for some time to see how the Centre deals with my request. I have to look after problems of my own people. I cannot allow them to face problems because of the Act," he said.
12 March 2015

Arunachal Inches Closer To Universal School Enrollment

Arunachal Pradesh is close to realising universal enrollment with the percentage of children in the age group of 6-14 enrolled in school at 95 or above, five years in a row, according to a survey report.

The percentage of children out of school in the age group of 6-14 years recorded in 2014 in the state is the lowest ever at 2.1 per cent, Annual Status of Education Report facilitated by Pratham, recently released in New Delhi said.

ASER is the largest annual household survey of children in rural India that focuses on the status of schooling and basic learning.

Although enrollment levels are very high for the age group covered by Right to Education Act (6 to 14 years), the proportion of 15 to 16 year olds not enrolled in school is on the higher side, with 8 per cent of boys and 7.5 per cent girls in the same age group, currently out of school.

But it is comparatively lower than the national average of 15. 9 per cent for boys and 17.3 per cent for girls in this age group, the report said.

The proportion of children enrolled in private schools in the state has increased from 2010.

Last year, 24.5 per cent of all 6-14 year old children in rural Arunachal were found to be enrolled in private schools. This is a big jump from 16.7 per cent in 2010.

Compared to the neighbouring states of Manipur and Meghalaya, the private school enrollment rates in the elementary stage in the state are low, but the figure is increasing every year.

ASER 2014 reached 9 districts and 229 villages including 4,928 households and about 9,086 children in the age group of 3-16 years in the state to conduct the survey.

According to the report, the situation with basic reading continues to be extremely disheartening in Arunachal.

In 2014, only 29.6 per cent of Std III children could read a Std I text fluently and only 44.4 per cent of Std V could read a Std II level text.

Even in Std VIII, only 73 per cent children can read Std II level text.

Basic arithmetic continues to be dismal in Arunachal as in other parts of country, but the state's children seem to be marginally better than the national average.

ASER 2014 recorded only 36.9 per cent Std III children in the state could solve a simple 2 digit carry forward subtraction as compared to the national average of 25.4 per cent.

Similarly 35.8 per cent children in Std V could compute a 3 by 1 digit division in the state against the national average of 26.1 per cent in the same grade.

The survey recorded 52.3 per cent children in the state of Std V could read an English sentence and out of them 76.7 per cent could understand the sentence; in comparison only 24 per cent children in Std V, nationally, could read an English sentence and of them only 62.2 per cent could comprehend an English sentence.

However, teacher and child attendance show no major changes in the state from previous years.
Trends show that children's attendance both in primary and upper primary schools was higher in 2014 as compared to the previous five years.

Percentage of teachers present in primary schools was recorded to be 84.7 per cent and 82.3 per cent in upper primary schools.

This trend, barring a year in between, remains the same over the last 5 years.

The survey also revealed that school facilities had not seen much improvement in the state with the percentage of schools complying with RTE mandated pupil-teacher ratios decreased from 78 per cent in 2010 to 69.4 per cent in 2014.

Drinking water was available in 53.5 per cent of the schools that were visited. In 2012, this figure was at 48.9 per cent.

The status of toilet remains to be a worry.

30.8 per cent of schools do not have a toilet and out of the schools that have toilets only 35.1 per cent was found to be usable.

Similarly 51.6 per cent of the schools do not have separate toilets for girls, and out of the schools that have toilets, only 24.5 per cent are found to be usable.

Kitchen sheds for cooking midday meal are found in only 57.4 per cent of the schools visited and meal being served in only 57.5 per cent schools, the report said.
13 February 2015

Remote Tribal Community in Arunachal Opens Homestay For Tourists

Traveller Hitesh Saikia said he has stayed with the Tangsa community and it was an amazing experience.

A small tribal community in the hills of Changlang district in Arunachal Pradesh have opened their homes for people to stay with them and have a taste of their culture, food and society.

Some of the families of the Tangsa community near Nampong have opened home stay, inviting tourists to not only stay with them amid the lush green nature cover but also taste their ethnic cuisine, visit the neighbouring hill tops and so on.

Jankhong Morang, a resident of Nongki Bosti in Nampong, has turned his small traditional hut to a home stay where tourists can savour smoked tea called 'phalap', rice beer called 'ju' or 'kham', in addition to a staple diet of steamed rice and boiled vegetables.

During their home stay, Morang said tourists can take the Pangsau Pass, which is only 12 km from Nampong, to visit Myanmar.

"We take tourists to the Pangsau Pass on the 10th, 20th and 30th of each month. They can go up to the border and after crossing the border they can hire motorcycles on the other side run by the Myanmarese youth and visit the lake of No Return," he said.

He said the lake was called so as during the World War II, many aircraft of the Allied Forces disappeared there while flying over it.

"We also take tourists to the hilltops where we cultivate," Morang said.

Traveller Hitesh Saikia said he has stayed with the Tangsa community and it was an amazing experience.

"I have stayed with the Tangsas. It's amazing to stay with the local community... The home stay concept in these areas is a recent phenomenon...," Saikia told IANS.

An official said the home stay provided an opportunity to stay close to nature and enjoy local food.

"They serve local food and one can really enjoy while being in the middle of such lush green nature and serenity," said P. Bordoloi, an executive with the state health department, who frequently visits different locations along the Assam-Arunachal Pradesh border.

One can call Nongjung Mossang at 09402239426 and Jankhong Morang at 09402223826 to know more about home stay.

Like many parts of the northeast, Arunachal Pradesh too has a history of World War II cemeteries at Digboi in Tinsukia district (bordering Assam) and at Jairampur, about 40 km from Nampong, in Changlang district.

Many tourists visit these historically important sites during their home stay at Nampong to get a peep into the World War II history.

"These graves bear a testimony to those soldiers, unlisted workers and labourers who ventured into the jungle amid blistering heat and laid down their lives during the World War II while being a part of the Allied Forces against the Japanese Imperial Army," reads one of the inscriptions at a cemetery in Jairampur.
26 January 2015

Arunachal Woman Inspires Farmers to Ditch Opium

By Prasanta Mazumdar

Guwahati, Sep 26
: A revolution is brewing in an Arunachal Pradesh district and fanning the flames of the energising change is ‘Tea Lady’ Basamlu Krisikro.

A post-graduate from the Delhi University, Basamlu took to tea cultivation to give her cancer-afflicted mother her daily dose of green tea, but the venture soon mushroomed into a thriving business.

Within a few years, her success story inspired several locals, who traditionally grew opium, to switch to tea crops. It is extracted from the poppy plant, which is illegally cultivated in Lohit, Anjaw, Tirap and Changlang districts in Eastern Arunachal, bordering China. Wakro alone has 12,000 to 13,000 opium cultivators.

The land here was once famous for its oranges, but the yield fell drastically over the last decade, leaving the farmers high and dry. Concerned at this, Basamlu and a medical practitioner, Nayil, took it upon themselves to convince the affected ryots that tea cultivation could be an alternative source of sustainable income.

They also encouraged opium farmers to replace their fields with small-scale tea plantations. And their hard work paid off. Within a year, at least a dozen of them turned into small-time tea growers.

“The sudden decline in yield of oranges perplexed farmers, who consulted experts and agencies in vain. Worried about their livelihood, they began cultivating opium. As a result, the local consumption of opium increased alarmingly. Opium gave them a source of income and got them hooked on to it as well,” Basamlu told Express.

“The consumption of the drug, especially among the youth, is increasing. The situation made some of us explore an alternative source of income. It was then that I got into tea cultivation. I approached some opium growers and advised them that they should opt for tea. I volunteered to provide them with technical and financial support,” Basamlu said.

Last year, her plantation spread across five hectares of land, produced 2,000 kg of orthodox and organic green tea.

Songelum, 40, is among those who gave up opium cultivation. “It is like an ATM. You will instantly get a buyer. Work hard from December to March and you will earn enough for a year. If you have a land measuring one hectare, you can get a produce of six to seven kg a year. Around `7,000 is all you will need to invest,” he said.
20 January 2015

China Snubs Japan For Calling Arunachal Part of India

China snubs Japan for calling Arunachal part of IndiaIndia-China border in Arunachal Pradesh.
Beijing, Jan 20 : China has snubbed Japan's Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida for his statement acknowledging Arunachal Pradesh as part of India.

The Chinese foreign ministry spokesman slammed Japan, asking it to mind its own business instead of interfering in India-China relationship. The Chinese reaction came after Kishida said that Japan was ready to invest in infrastructure projects in India's landlocked north-east, but it would not invest in Arunachal Pradesh, although it did see the state as part of India.

Reacting to Japanese minister's statement, Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei said, "We are seriously concerned about this and have lodged serious representation with the Japanese side. We hope Japan can fully understand the sensitivity of China-India border issues and respect the efforts that both sides have taken to resolve the disputes through negotiations."

Hong said that Japan should be "prudent in its words and actions" and added that China and India are trying to resolve the boundary question in a manner that is fair, reasonable and acceptable to both sides.

The spokesman pointed out that Japan had earlier said that it holds no position and it will not intervene in the boundary dispute between China and India. He said Japan should now clarify on the recent statement and 'remove the negative implications' arising from it.

Pointing out that China claims ownership of Arunachal, Hong said the state includes "three areas in Tibet Autonomous Region - Monyul, Loyul and Lower Tsayul - currently under Indian illegal occupation".

China regards the Mcmahon Line as illegal and claims areas in north-east along the line as Chinese territory.
18 November 2014

Arunachal Pradesh CM visits Google Headquarters, Seeks Help to Develop Education

Arunachal Pradesh CM visits Google Headquarters, seeks help to develop education New Delhi, Nov 18 : Highlighting various problems associated with the education system in the state, Tuki sought ideas from Google on how to improve it in the state and also impart quality education to each and every student without any bias, an official communique said here today.

The Chief Minister stressed on the importance of improving the standard of the teaching fraternity in the state and urged Google to impart training and know-how to the teachers in the state and bring them at par with international standard.

Google being a pioneer in e-education would be of tremendous help in fulfilling the vision and ideals set by the state government, Tuki observed.

Google highlighted the advancement in education these days and how it has become a pioneer in the field of quality e-education and dedicated team of professionals in this regard.

Google has agreed to make detailed Arunachal specific report and project and bring in solutions keeping in mind the local issues associated with it.

The Chief Minister also requested Google to invest in IT based industries in the state, the communique said.

The Arunachal Chief Minister visited the Google headquarters, Mountain View, California, USA on Saturday on an invitation by Google for the Google Global Education Symposium on Ministers and held talks with the Google Education team led by Caesar Sengupta, vice-president, product management, Michael de la Cruz, Global Head of Education, Bram Bout, Worldwide Director of Education and Gagandeep Singh Puri, Head of Education in India.
12 November 2014

India Gearing Up To Build Largest Hydel Power Plant at Arunachal Pradesh

The State-owned NHPC has been given green nod by from the Forest Advisory Committee for Dibang hydel project in Arunachal Pradesh. NHPC is gearing upto approach the Cabinet Committee for a final approval within a year.

India is planning to build it biggest hyde power plant with a capacity of a 3,000 MW at Arunachal Pradesh.

The State-owned NHPC has been given green nod by from the Forest Advisory Committee for Dibang hydel project in Arunachal Pradesh. NHPC is gearing upto approach the Cabinet Committee for a final approval within a year.

"We will execute the Dibang project in partnership with one of the PSUs and the state government at an investment of Rs 15,000-16,000 crore. Due to its large scale, the per-MW project cost will be much less than the average of Rs 7-8 crore," NHPC Chairman and Managing Director RST Sai said.

"Also, we will be able to execute the project faster as there are only a handful of families living at such high altitude and it will save time for their rehabilitation."

NHPC, operates 6,500 MW of hydro power generation capacity. Enthused by the Narendra Modi government's reforms for faster clearances for infrastructure projects NHPC hopes to build more plants.

The delay in clearances and rehabilitation of displaced people had many projects in limbo. As a result the country's share of hydro power generation capacity began to decline.