Protests against Chief Minister Pema Khandu and Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein’s announcement regarding issuing permanent resident certificates (PRC) to non-APST communities living in Lekang (Namsai district) and Vijaynagar (Changlang) are gaining momentum with every passing day.
A huge number of people under the banner of the United Arunachal Indigenous Peoples’ Forum (UAIPF) on Thursday organized a rally at the IG Park tennis court in Itanagar to protest against Chief Minister Pema Khandu and Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein’s announcement.
A report in The Arunachal Times quoting UAIPF organizing chairman Laffe Paffa stated that they asked Chief Minister Pema Khandu and Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein to recall the promise they made to non-APSTs living in Lekang and other places.
Questioning the joint high power committee (JHPC) constituted by the State Government to study the legalities involved in issuing, or not issuing, PRCs to non-APSTs, Paffa was quoted as saying that the JHPC should work in the greater interests of the indigenous people and present a transparent report.
Paffa also urged the state’s legislators to work in the interests of the indigenous people and protect their rights.
He also said the Chief Minister and the Deputy Chief Minister would be held responsible in the event of any untoward incident occurring in the course of the agitation against the government’s PRC decision.
Meanwhile, the president of the United Indigenous People Forum of Lekang, Priyadhar Khattiya Deori, in a statement said seeking PRCs is their ‘birth right’.
He argued that the government of Arunachal Pradesh itself demarcated and registered the land plot/dag number of every land holder in Lekang in the chitha register during the first ever cadastral land survey done in 1968 in Lekang circle.