The Chakma Development Foundation of India (CDFI), on Thursday, sought intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and RSS chief Mohan Bhagat against the “racial profiling” of 65,000 Chakmas and Hajongs residing in Arunachal Pradesh.
The Chakma body has raised objection to the “exclusive census”, which will be conducted for the two communities from December 11.
The CDFI said that the “illegal census” will be conducted with the “ultimate aim to displace and expel them (Chakmas and Hajongs)” from Arunachal Pradesh.
On November 26, deputy commissioner of Changlang district in Arunachal Pradesh notified that the “census of Chakmas and Hajongs 2021” be conducted in all the Chakma/Hajong inhabited areas under his jurisdiction for report to the Government on or before December 31, 2021.
The census seeks personal information as such as bank account details, employment details and criminal cases pending including violations of the Inner Line Permits (ILP) under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation etc.
“This exclusive census is an act of racial profiling as only the Chakmas and Hajongs are being singled out. Arunachal Pradesh shares borders with China and Myanmar from where illegal migration of population has been taking place since independence. Further, illegal immigration and settlement of people without Inner Line Permit has been taking place regularly and their settlements are visible in most parts of Arunachal Pradesh including Namsai, Lohit and Papumpare district. Yet, the State government is only targeting the Chakmas and Hajongs in clear violations of the Constitution of India and the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination ratified by India,” stated Suhas Chakma.
“The Chakmas and Hajongs were settled by the Union of India, the competent authority, during 1964 to 1969 and therefore they never required ILP under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation of 1873. However, the State government of Arunachal Pradesh instead of taking action against thousands of non-Chakmas and non-Hajongs residing in the State without ILP is seeking information on the violations of the ILP from the Chakmas and Hajongs who do not require it. This exposes the vindictiveness of the State government against the Chakmas and Hajongs,” Chakma further said.
Meanwhile, the CDFI urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “fulfil the responsibility of the central government towards the Chakmas and Hajongs” in the State.
“They were settled in there only by the Central government under a definite plan of rehabilitation after the 1962 Indo-China War,” a release from the Chakma body said.
It adds: “Further, the Chakmas and Hajongs of Arunachal Pradesh are the worst victims of the partition of India and as migrants from Undivided India, the Government of India has specific responsibility towards them.”
“The State government of Arunachal Pradesh by pursuing such racist programmes against the Chakmas and Hajongs has created such a situation that in terms of social and political acceptance, the Chakmas and Hajongs are at the lowest rank, even after those who reside in the State without the Inner Line Permit. Therefore, it is the State government which has been preventing social integration of the Chakmas and Hajongs in the State and is currently creating law and order situation involving the Chakmas and Hajongs,” Suhas Chakma said.