ArunachalItanagar

SASI reiterates demand to bring Arunachal under 371 (H)

ITANAGAR, MAR 20: The Save Arunachal Save Indigenous (SASI) on Sunday reiterated their demand for the constitutional amendment to bring Arunachal Pradesh under the provision of Article 371 (H) as that of Nagaland and Mizoram with Article 371 (G) and 371 (A) respectively.

In a press conference here, SASI vice chairman R Rakshap thanked the senior Congress MLA Ninong Ering for raising the issue of de-reservation in zero hour discussion during the Conduct of Business in Arunachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly which concluded recently.

He also appreciated the Chief Minister (CM) Pema Khandu for taking cognizance of the issue and assuring to form a ‘high power committee’ consisting of selective elected representatives including some organizations in order to look into the matter for early solution.

“We hope the CM will abide by his words”, said Rakshap, adding, hoping the state government will succeed in bringing the state under the provision of Article 371 (H) to safeguard its indigenous people and land and resources.

He informed that the forum had submitted representation to the state government on 13 August, 2021, and met many elected representatives regarding the matter.

Accordingly, MLA Ninong Ering had raised the issue in zero hour discussion during the Conduct of Business in Arunachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly, he added.

He also informed it had even organized protest rallies earlier making the public aware of the issue and against the state government for not addressing its demand.

Further, he appealed to the Minister of Law and Justice, Kiren Rijiju to look into the matter on a priority basis when the state government approaches the center regarding the issue.

Meanwhile, SASI Spokesperson S D Loda while elaborating on the issue said, “Prior to the Forest (Conservation) Act of 1980, there are lots of reserve forests declared by the then government officials who went on claiming reserve forest up into the foothills without being aware that someday the tribal population will grow and spread”.

The issue is a hurdle to any developmental project in the state, he added, stating, one has to get a NOC (No Objection Certificate) from the Ministry paying compensation of forestry fund, net present value etc. Hence, there are countless numbers of overlapping forest issues.

He also said that we are happy to learn that our elected representatives are seriously thinking on de-reservation, adding, the minister concerned had informed that the state government has directed the respective Deputy Commissioners of all districts to compile a list of reserve areas and submit it to the concerned authority.

“We oppose complete de-reservation”, said Loda, informing the public that complete de-reservation is not possible and warned them not to buy or claim any land outside the human settlement area.

We will closely monitor the process of de-reservation, he added, stating, ‘If the government fails to fulfill the demand the forum shall take up any sort of democratic movements in order to safeguard our future generation’.

On 16 March, 2022, the senior Congress MLA Ninong Ering issued a notice, stating that “A resolution may be adopted in this august house that the status of Arunachal Pradesh under Article 371 (H) designated to the power and function of the governor without power to the state of Arunachal Pradesh”.

“The house may move in the golden jubilee year that Article 371 (H) may be amended with keeping the provision of the Constitution of India to granting the state of Arunachal Pradesh to exercise its power over the hills, mountains, jungles, land, rivers and minerals as that of Nagaland with Article 371 (A)”, the notice added

Meanwhile, the Chief Minister Pema Khandu in reply to the house said that the state government may move a resolution and also visit national capital New Delhi to meet the law & justice department authority and also meet the Union Minister of Law & Justice Kiren Rijiju for the same and hope that the issue is resolved soon. 

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