This drama at the State level climaxed on 22 February 2019 (Friday) when three young people were gunned down by the security force. Private residence of DCM burnt, capital DC office burnt, AAPSU and ANSU offices destroyed among others.
23 February was the day the State Assembly was going to discuss the recommendations of the JHPC that basically suggested PRC should be granted. Conditions put forward were (AP Times, 15 Feb 2019):
PRCs, it said, “will be granted to the non-APSTs of Namsai and Changlang districts (other than Vijaynagar circle) who prove that he/she had been continuously residing in his/her original place of residence/settlement prior to 1968, or a non-APST person who is a descendent of a non-APST person who proves that he/she had been continuously residing in his/her original place of residence/settlement prior to 1968.”
In the case of Vijaynagar circle in Changlang district, the JHPC recommended that “only the original ex-servicemen settlers pertaining to the period 1964-1971 and their descendents shall be eligible for grant of PRC.”
Not one AP tribes voted for this recommendation. There were series of deliberations, MOUs submitted, peaceful agitations, news conferences. Our final news release was on 15 February from our Society’s President.
But the GoAP was fully prepared to implement the recommendations of the JHPC and ignored every voice of the State’s tribes. This was unfortunate. Only in the last minute when the government felt nothing could be done, the CM announced: Arunachal Pradesh CM Pema Khandu on violence over Permanent Residence Certificate matter: I would like to assure the people in Arunachal Pradesh that govt will not take up the matter even in future. This is a clear message. (ANI)
Not satisfied with assurance the people demanded a Gazette should be issued that declares PRC issue will never be taken up again. CM announced this is done (AP Times, 6 March 2019).
By then enough damage. Cases of the three youths, destruction of public and private properties are still pending. Arunachal is still not at rest.
Finally, the needs of communities demanding for PRC remained unaddressed. They cannot be left alone that way. Government decision is necessary.
We are not knowledgeable to comment for communities in Namsai but for those in Vijoynagar Circle, we are demanding the Govt not to renew their settlement lease period beyond its expiry in 2020. That is a clear message from our end. Otherwise, we will continue to face similar struggles in future.