NEW DELHI: India is scheduled to submit its action taken report to the UN’s top anti-racism body, the United Nations Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD Committee) today on the steps taken to prevent and halt any measures directed at deporting or relocating the Chakma and Hajong communities of Arunachal Pradesh.

This includes the special census, the measures adopted to prevent and combat racial profiling or racial discrimination against the persons belonging to the Chakma and Hajong communities and the implementation of the judgements of the Supreme Court of India.

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On April 29, 2022, the UN’s top anti-racism body consisting of 18 experts elected by the members of the United Nations directed India to submit its action taken report after it intervened against the announcement of relocation by the Chief Minister of Arunachal Pradesh, the special census of the Chakmas and Hajongs launched by Deputy Commissioner of Changlang district in November 2021 to deport Chakmas and Hajongs from Arunachal Pradesh State, and never processing their citizenship applications as directed by the Supreme Court of India in the two judgments.

“The intervention of the UN’s top anti-racism body is a recognition of racial discrimination faced by the Chakmas and Hajongs of Arunachal Pradesh by the United Nations. That the UN has to intervene in seeking implementation of the Supreme Court’s judgements in the country sends a wrong message to India. If the Supreme Court judgments are not implemented by the Union of India and the State of Arunachal Pradesh, it basically means that the rule of law does not exist in the country for the Chakmas and Hajongs”, stated Suhas Chakma, Founder of the Chakma Development Foundation of India (CDFI). 

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India had ratified the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (CERD) in 1968 accepting its legal enforceability in India and on 21 September 2010, India also issued a gazette notification specifying the Convention “as an international covenant in its application to the protection of human rights in India” under the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993.

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