MV Road: May 2020

The latest news for MV Road is the announcement by the local MLA that the road will be completed by the end of 2021. But looking at the current situation, the question is will it be even possible?

Five days after this video was published, the Governor called for a review meeting on 7th May.

Governor reviews progress of Miao-Vijoynagar road

ITANAGAR, May 7: Governor of Arunachal Pradesh BD Mishra reviewed the progress of strategic Miao-Vijoynagar road here at Raj Bhavan on Thursday with Rural Works Department (RWD) Minister Honchun Ngandam, Urban Development Minister Kamlung Mosang, who is also the local MLA of Mioa-Vijoynagar and RWD Chief Engineer Doli Nyodu, while maintaining social distancing. (AP Times, 8 May 2020).

Not satisfied with the progress of the MV Road, the Yobin Welfare Society, Gov, CM urged to strictly monitor work on Miao-Vijoynagar road (Ap Times, 13 May 2020).

ITANAGAR, May 12: Expressing serious concern over the slow progress of the construction work on the Miao-Vijoynagar road in Changlang district, the Yobin Welfare Society (YWS) has in a representation urged the governor and the chief minister to strictly monitor the project, so that it meets the deadline of 2021.

The Governor and DCM did another round of assessment on 21 May (AP Times).

The governor and the deputy chief minister also discussed on restoring the Mioa-Vijoynagar road for economic prosperity of the remote Vijoynagar area and protection of the treasured flora and fauna of the Namdapha National Park.

 

Miao-Vijoynagar road to be built in 3 years: BRO

I find this article by Pradeep Kumar very informative on the MV Road, except for two factual errors.

  • The first, “another expedition led by major Sumeer Singh in February 1961 which were unsuccessful. The second team could reach Gandhigram, 22-km short of Vijoynagar.” Expedition by Major Sumeer Singh was not unsuccessful. In fact, it he who contacted our villagers for the first time on 7th May 1961 which happened to be a Sunday.
  • The second, “The settlement of retired AR personnel there had began from 07.05.1961… “. The settlement started from 1967 and stopped by the state government in 1971. This 07.05.1961 was the date when the expedition team first arrived in Gandhigram village.

Meanwhile there is a goodnews about the Vijoynagar’s Advanced Landing Ground that was made operational on 18 Sep 2019 after a gap of 3 years. See report in AP Times (20 Sep 2019), entitled “Vijoynagar ALG reopens after 3 years”. The CM Pema Khandu shared the landing of an AN-32 plane in Vijoynagar.

Source:

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The road that was in 1972

The road built in 1972 was motorable till 1980 and then state governor KAA Raja had reached Vijoynagar with a fleet of 12 jeeps, but the first and the last vehicles seen there. Changlang DC Dr. S. B. Deepak Kumar had walked through this road in December 2009 and strongly recommended its construction. Governor Gen (Retd) J. J. Singh during his visit to Miao on 07.08.10 had directed the PWD to start construction of road work to complete it by December 2011 and had reopened in March 2011 after 36 years.

Eight company vehicles, consisting of bulldozers & trucks had arrived at Shidi on 10.01.12 and walked for four days to reach Miao.  The BRO on 01.02.11 had joined the bid for survey of 213-km Nampong-Vijoynagar road.

Vijoynagar in nature’s lap

The 7th Assam Rifles had launched expedition to demarcate border of India and Myanmar from Miao after independence in June 1960 and another expedition led by major Sumeer Singh in February 1961 which were unsuccessful. The second team could reach Gandhigram, 22-km short of Vijoynagar. However, 3rd expedition (Srijit-II) led by Major General AS Gaurya had begun in October 1961 and reached Chankan Pass and later Vijoynagar on 27.11.61 to hoist Indian tri-colour and named the place after his son. Since then the AR has been guarding the frontier. Land-locked Vijoynagar, called Daudi by local residents Lisu (Yobin), spread across 8,000 sqkm, is the remotest inhabited land of India.

By Pradeep Kumar

NAHARLAGUN, Sept 13: An all weather 157-km Miao-Vijoynagar strategic road in Changlang district would be completed in three years once fund is sanctioned after submission of detailed project report (DPR), a top ranking BRO engineer told this daily on Thursday.

Vijonagar, located along Indo-China-Myanmar tri-junction, is only remotest circle headquarters of Arunachal Pradesh without road link, though its advanced landing ground (ALG) was upgraded and inaugurated by former governor Gen (Retd) J J Singh on 18.11.11. Its elected representative Kamlung Mosang (present UD Minister) has been making all out efforts while Governor Brig. (Retd) B.D. Mishra has put his all weight behind the road.

The governor, who had conducted an aerial survey of the road on September one last, had also raised it in his address to NEC, saying “lack of robust land, air, internet and mobile network connectivity are biggest problem of the state which derails developmental needs and security parameters.”

The reconnaissance of the road begun by two teams on Thursday, as assured by BRO additional director general (East) P.K.H. Singh to the governor and Chief Minister Pema Khandu during a review meeting at Guwahati on September 9 last, the source said, adding one team was airdropped on the higher reaches by an IAF helicopter.

The road survey is being conducted by expert BRO engineers and state’s senior RWD engineers to decide the technology to be adopted.

Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein, while reviewing work progress of the road in a meeting with RWD Minister Honchun Ngandam and RWD CE-cum-PMGSY CEO D Nyodu on 23.07.19, had directed to expedite the road works.

Pointing out peculiar soil conditions and shortfall in sanctioned DPR for which new alignment has to be made, Ngandam had said and sought Rs 39 crore additional fund to which the DyCM had nodded. Harsh topography, repeated cloud bursts and frequent rainfall, and peculiar soil conditions, forest regulations, slope stabilization of hillside were challenges, Nyodu had told.

It may be recalled that while launching two-month-long Arunachal Rising campaign on 07.12.18, the CM had announced to build the raid on priority. Huge horticulture-agriculture potentials of Vijoynagar could not be tapped for lack of proper surface and air communication, he had said. Tough former chief minister, late Dorjee Khandu had approved its survey and DPR under Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana but affected and delayed due to improper work allocation, he had added.

The settlement of retired AR personnel there had began from 07.05.1961 for which their population is almost 50% of the total while 45% civilians are mainly Lisu and rest officials on duty.. Besides SIB, Assam Rifles camp and state police, there are Govt primary schools and one secondary school to cater to needs of students of 16 villages. This place was little known to outside world prior to 1961 and the ALG was developed during 1962.

The inhabitants for want of road connectivity totally depend on supply of essential items by An-32 aircrafts which fly either from Dibrugarh and Miao but are very irregular with limited haulage capacity. That is why salt and sugar are sold at minimum Rs 200 per kg while a bag of cement costs about Rs 7,000.

With Assam Rifles having limited medical facilities, patients face toughest challenge in emergency medical cases to go out for treatment. Miao, the nearest town 157-km away, takes about 6-days walk by foot march or less on elephant.

 

Vijoynagar road to ensure national security: Ngandam

Two points that caught my attention: The government is interested to provide security to the citizens of the area. The other is the concern of government for the villages along the MV Road where the people are living. They seem to be planning to relocate elsewhere which is not a good idea. Read more (Arunachal Observer, 28 July 2019)

By Pradeep Kumar

ITANAGAR, July 27: Though the 156-km road from Miao to Vijoynagar, located along India-China-Bhutan tri-junction, but would be completed on priority by the president GoAP as time-bound target has been given to present road contractor, said WRD Minister Honchun Ngandam.

Pointing out that various factors could have delayed its work since resumption in 2000, Ngandam, in an exclusive interview to this daily on Saturday, said that additional Rs 39 crore would be given by the GoAP to the contractors who would be legally bounded with time bound targets for timely completion.

It may be recalled here that Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein involving Ngandam and Miao MLA-cum-UD Minister Kamlung Mossang on July 23 had a threadbare discussion on steps to speed up the road project. Governor Brig (Retd) B D Mishra chaired a meeting with Mein, Ngandam, Mossang, secretary & RWD CE at Raj Bhawan next day and reiterated concerted efforts by all stakeholders to complete the road in a time bound manner.

Once completed the road would not only ensure national security with speedy movement of security forces guarding the border, while the road passing though Namdapha Tiger Reserve (NTR) will make it more secured. Many local people living within the NTR along the proposed road will be shifted to inhabited areas as assured by  Mossang.

There is no certainty about availability of tigers in NTR but the GoAP and people value state’s rich flora and fauna which would be protected more effectively with the movement of forces by the road if attempt of poaching is reported, he said with confidence when his attention was drawn that 53 NTR casual employees were sacked by authorities recently.

When contacted, Mossang clarified that National Tiger Conservation Authority (NTCA) did not release fund to pay wages of those employees in 2018-2019 fiscal for which their services were terminated.

When pointed out that 80% of 1,895 sqkm tiger reserve in Changlang district is inaccessible and the frontline staff though all casual employees but keep watch on poachers, he said that the NTCA action might be based on its doubt about availability of tigers  in NTR, but it is treasure trove of numerous wild animals and medicinal plants.

Expressing concern over NTCE move, he said that he has written to state Chief Minister Pema Khandu for prompt action in this regard.

Renewed hope for Vijoynagar

[ Aphu Avia Ngwazah ]
The citizens of the international border circle, Vijoynagar, feel comforted by Governor BD Mishra and local legislator K Mosang’s taking stock of the prevailing developmental situation concerned with fundamental human rights of the people. There is hope now that things will get better.

Now that the governor himself is behind the Vijoynagar road project, we believe the road will become motorable once again. We still recall that the then lieutenant governor, KAA Raja, had come to Vijoynagar with a fleet of 12 jeeps in 1975.

Indeed, the deplorable condition of border villages like Gandhigram, Sidiku, etc, had caught the attention of the central government also.

Chairperson of the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST), Nandkumar Sai, also emphatically instructed the government of Arunachal to “take immediate action to provide infrastructures like road, electricity, water supply, medical facilities, education, etc, in the tribal area.”

This instruction was given on 1 May, 2018, to the state’s SJETA secretary, in the presence of Yobin public leaders and officials of the union tribal affairs ministry, at the NCST office in New Delhi.

However, the situation has not changed for the better.

The July 2019 Lok Sabha presentation by MP Tapir Gao on the plight of Vijoynagar is indeed true, though not at all exhaustive. He mentioned that the price of a bag of cement has touched Rs 7000 and a kilogram of common salt is sold at Rs 200. And this runs contrary to the governments’ policy of ‘development from the border areas’.

May we plead with our proficient governor to bring the price of a bag of cement down to at least Rs 1000 and that of a kg of salt to some Rs 50? This will bring smiles on the faces of the waiting public.

Border villages like Sidi and Dawodi/Jahu-Natu have much geopolitical and historical significance. According to major general DK Palit, major Sumer Singh of the 7th Assam Rifles, during the Chaukan Pass Expedition of 1961, ran into the Yobin tribe’s “village Sidi which he renamed as Gandhigram…”.

Then in the late 1960s, the then chief of air staff, PC Lal, installed a bust of Mahatma Gandhi, as if to match the name with a symbol. Gandhiji’s statue still stands. Symbolically, even the Father of the Nation suffers hardships with the people Gandhigram.

Again, in October 1961-62, the then inspector general of the Assam Rifles, Ajit Singh Gureya, pushed the expedition further up from Sidi/Gandhigram towards the present Dawodi or Vijoynagar and beyond.

It was during this expedition that “Vijoynagar” began to be familiar to the rest of India. Vijoynagar was a Yobin village called Dawodi or Jahu-Natu.

“The place, locally called Jahu-Natu, has been named Vijoynagar after the name of the son of Maj Gen AS Gureya, in 1962.” This is how the Yobin village Dawodi or Jahu-Natu was replaced with “Vijay Nagar” (Ref The Gazetteer of India/ Arunachal Pradesh/Tirap District, 1980, Pg 233).

Unfortunately, these days people laugh as to why the area is still called Vijoynagar, which means ‘victorious town’. People are somehow not able to feel ‘victorious’ when there is no road. Nevertheless, the Yobin tribe of Vijoynagar circle has contributed much to the geopolitical formation of the area. The contributions have now been appreciated by the state, even with gold medals.

Commending the Yobin tribe, Chief Minister Pema Khandu wrote, “If Vijaynagar is part of India today, it’s because of men like Pisi La Singpho, Choegey Yobin and Akhi Yeliye Yobin, who helped the Indian administration consolidate its rule over the area in the 1960-70s, when the Indo-Myanmar borders were not clearly demarcated.”

It may be noted that it was only in 1972 that joint teams of India and Myanmar undertook a boundary survey, and boundary pillars were erected. It is common knowledge that the Yobin at that time had “helped the government authorities in demarcation of the international boundary line and do so even today when the boundary pillars are examined.” (Shalini Verma, Secy SJETA, GoAP. FN Secy (SW) SC/ST (IN-EX) 99, dated 25 Novemver, 2013, Pg 3).

However, the Yobin tribe is still living without much participation in power-sharing for no known or valid reasons. There is not a single Yobin officer in the Arunachal Pradesh government. Not even a Yobin peon is found in entire Itanagar. Nevertheless, the Yobin tribe goes on with dignity, confidence, industriousness and gentleness.

Now, as we zero in on the Miao-Vijoynagar road, we find that lack of motorable road is being used as an excuse for the ailments of the circle. But that is not the sole fact. We want everyone to know that Vijoynagar road construction started sometime in 1966. By 1975, lieutenant governor Raja visited Gandhigram and Vijoynagar on his jeep. Concrete culverts and metal bridges were placed upto some 40th Mile. The rest of the road just had wood bridges.

Then there came a temporary ban from the forest/wildlife department, but that was lifted too. They have also accepted the fact that the park came later while the aborigines have been living here even before the area became an Indian territory. It did not make sense to cut off an entire administrative circle without surface connectivity. Doing so was undermining the fundamental rights enshrined in the constitution of the country.

If we stop and think, we fail to understand how the then PWD or CPWD could make that road in the 1960s and the ’70s, all manually and successfully, but then the subsequent road works by reputed companies/departments with heavy machineries and hefty sanctions could not produce the road. People fail to understand why the road construction is always done as little as possible. Most part of the year, one can see the earthmovers and other equipments lying here and there along the way. But they always come up with fine-sounding, eye-washing explanations as to why the road could not be constructed. The general public feels that there is a lack of commitment to actually do the road.

After the 40th Mile or Burma Nallah, there is not a single concrete or metal bridge. More than 60 percent of the road has no concrete culverts. After the 40th Mile, they always made wooden bridges that do not last. Please do not be surprised that there is no road. If anyone chooses to perform tasks with unethical, quick-fix, fast money-grabbing attitude, we shall never see anything of value, let alone the Vijoynagar road.

Of course everyone understands the importance of this road. Advocacies, sanctions, work executions, fund utilizations had been there. But there was lack of proper monitoring, and the road cannot be seen till now.

Former union rural development minister Jairam Ramesh had come to Miao in February 2013 and promised that the road would be constructed. He initiated some Rs 268 crore for the project under the PMGSY. Six years later, the road-making hasn’t progressed much, and the people still walk for four or five days just to get home or to the nearest town.

However, now we are confident that the present contractors, authorities concerned and all related machineries will not rest without producing the road. Otherwise, we should no longer waste public money on a road that is taking 53 years to complete. In fact, they should have long surrendered and given it to the BRO. The BRO does. They can.

You may agree that the Miao-Vijoynagar road is, by and large, a piece of cake compared to other roads made in the state. It just needs continued, regular, systematic, monitored efforts. They did it in the 1960s, all manually, using spades, axes and wheelbarrows. Vehicles plied there till the late 1970s and the early ’80s. No one should be made to think that it is a ‘Mission: Impossible’ road. It is not. Just come and see.

The road as it is now is difficult, but not impossible. Last December, Sun Bahadur Pun ventured to Vijoynagar with TC trucks and earth movers. The trip was a remarkable one. It took him several months to come back to Miao, and by that time some of the loaded commodities perished. Farmers incurred heavy loses.

One might also recall that several Bolero pickups and tractors have made it to Gandhigram and Dawodi, and are in use currently. So the challenges are hilariously real, and yet there is a way where there is political will.

Meanwhile, in this tryst and suffering of geographical isolation, development bypass, and basic human rights violations, it is not only the aboriginal Yobin tribe but also the retired Assam Rifles pensioner families who were brought there during the 4th Five Year Plan who suffer. The settlers comprised five or six different language groups, but mostly Nepali speakers had been settled in the valley. They, too, share our cup of difficulties and hardships.

We express our gratefulness to the Raj Bhavan and the government for noticing and championing the cause of the less known people who are the identity of India along the Changlang frontier. We trust things will look up from now on.

(The contributor is the general secretary of the Yobin Tribe Fundamental Rights Forum. He can be contacted at aviafisher@gmail.com)

Miao Vijoynagar Road: Latest Push 6 Years After Grand Funding

The government’s will to build MV Road is beginning to feel among the people. The last two weeks or so, there are a series of high level meetings in the Capital. It all started with the announcement that the Governor will visit on 15 July 2019. That did not happened.

Below is a series of events, with chronology from bottom up.

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Arunachal Guv calls for timely completion of Miao-Vijyanagar road

Maximum work must be done during the rain-free months from November to February and the road must be made functional, the governor told state minister Kamlung Mossang who met him at the Raj Bhavan to brief him on the progress of the work.

The governor said the work must be completed within a timeframe for the benefit of the people living there. (North East Today, 17 Nov 2020).

SBL to recommend clearance for Miao-Vijaynagar road, accepts proposal to declare Kaiser-i-Hind state butterfly

11 Jan 2020 (AP Times)

The 22nd State Board for Wildlife (SBL) that met on Friday evening under the chairmanship of Chief Minister Pema Khandu resolved to recommend wildlife clearance for the much-awaited Miao-Vijaynagar road in Changlang district, which passes through the famed Namdapha Tiger Reserve.

The board accepted the proposal to realign the road at two stretches – which would help reduce the length of the road considerably – owing to “unfeasibility of maintenance along the said two stretches.”

Gov briefs min on Miao-Vijoynagar road

November 25, 2019 (AP Times)

NEW DELHI, Nov 24: Arunachal Governor BD Mishra met union Environment, Forest & Climate Change Minister, Prakash Javadekar, on the sideline of the 50th Conference of Governors here on Sunday and briefed the minister on the restoration of the Miao-Vijoynagar road, in Changlang district, and its handing over to the BRO for maintenance.

Holding discussions related to forests in Arunachal, the governor said that “environmental impact assessment requires a review as some important projects, particularly roads, are delayed due to guidelines for environmental protection and conservation goals.”

GoAP aims to achieve most of developmental targets by 2024: Gov

8 Jan 2020 (AP Times)

The governor stressed on the strategic importance of the border areas and the need look into the requirements of those living in such areas. He informed that the government is working on the 157-km strategic Miao-Vijaynagar road project in Changlang district, in association with the Border Roads Organisation.

Governor, CM review projects

20 Nov 2019 (AP Times)

The Governor “Besides stressing on expediting the road projects, he emphasized the need to preserve the tiger reserves in Namdapha forest in Changlang district.”

Taking Road Connectivity to the last person: CM

17 October 2019, also appeared in AP Times titled “Gov, CM chair meeting to review Miao-Vijoynagar road project”.

MV Road - 18 Oct 2019

CM’s Twitter Message

8 Sep 2019 (Ref)

MV road - 9 sep 2019

This matter appeared in Assam Sentinel, 11 Sep 2019 entitled “BRO to Begin Inspection of Miao-Vijoynagar Road in Changlang District”. It seems that BRO is given additional responsibility such as “inspections” whatever that may involve. And I heard from many people that this survey team went out to survey on the 12 Sep as promised.

Joint Survey?

While appreciating Governor and CM’s effort I failed to understand why they want to conduct a joint survey of BRO and RWD.

Pema

State’s agenda for NEC plenary session discussed

4 Sep 2019 (AP Times)

Sharing the observations he made during his recent visit to Vijoynagar, Miao, Jairampur, Nampong and Pangsau Pass in Changlang district with the chief minister, the governor reiterated the need to expedite the construction of the Miao-Vijoynagar road and inauguration of trade and commerce activities at the Indo-Myanmar haats in Pangsau Pass.

Miao-Vijoynagar road to be constructed by all means: Governor

VIJOYNAGAR, Aug 30:Governor BD Mishra has assured the people of Vijoynagar circle in Changlang district that the Miao-Vijoynagar road “will be constructed by all means.”

Governor discusses on strategic road with RWD minister

22 August 2019 (AP Times)

ITANAGAR, Aug 21: Rural Works Department Minister Honchun Ngandam called on Governor BD Mishra at the Raj Bhavan here on Wednesday and apprised him regarding the much-needed construction of the road from Miao to Vijoynagar in Changlang district.
They discussed the national importance of the road and also the road importance for the people located in the far-flung areas on the international border of India and Myanmar and gave emphasis on speedy construction of the Miao-Vijoynagar road as per the stipulated specifications and its early completion, preferably by the end of the current financial year.

They noted that with the construction of this road there will also be substantial care and improvement of flora and fauna in the Namdapha National Park, besides effective surveillance and control on poaching activity, if any, in the area.

They also opined that the safe animal passages and corridors for the free movement of animals within the park should be fully protected.

Governor, CM emphasize need for proper road network

14 August 2019 (AP Times)

… The governor commended the CM for according priority to development and public welfare, and shared details of his meetings with ministers and officers of the rural works, the environment & forests and the planning departments, besides the BSNL, regarding the strategic Miao-Vijoynagar road. …

DoNER Sanctions

7 August 2019

… the ministry has also sanctioned Rs. 6.23 Cr for FDR and strengthening of pavement surface, bridges and other works at Miao to Vijaynagar Road in Changlang District… Read more.

Governor holds high-level meet on Miao-Vijoynagar road

24 July 2019

ITANAGAR, Jul 24: Governor of Arunachal Pradesh Dr BD Mishra convened a high level meeting here at the Raj Bhavan to discuss in detail about the long pending Miao-Vijoynagar road construction issue. Read more

DCM calls for early construction of Miao-Vijaynagar road

23 July 2019

ITANAGAR, Jul 23: Deputy Chief Minister Chowna Mein has called for constructing the Miao-Vijaynagar road in Changlang district “on a war footing.” … He said the government is ready to provide an additional fund of Rs 39 crore for realignment and construction of culverts and bridges, as sought by the department. …Read more

CM, governor review developmental activities

20 July 2019

ITANAGAR, Jul 20: The governor and the CM reviewed various developmental activities, programmes and ongoing projects in the state. They discussed expediting the Miao-Vijoynagar road project, planning for the next academic session of the sainik school in Niglok in East Siang district, and the programmes and functioning of the Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission. Read more

Mosang, Mishra discuss welfare measures for Vijoynagar

11 July 2019

ITANAGAR, Jul 11: Civil Supplies Minister Kamlung Mosang called on Governor BD Mishra at the Raj Bhavan here on 11 July and the two discussed matters related to the welfare of the people of Vijoynagar administrative circle in Changlang district.

…Acknowledging that Vijoynagar remains cut off all through the year, and is extremely inaccessible during the rainy season, Mishra asked Mosang to “reactivate work on the Miao-Vijoynagar road at the earliest,” and said he would like to chair a meeting on the issue on 15 July. Read more… and also in Dawnlitpost.

Tapir Gao speaks on MV Road in Parliament

9 July 2019

The other initiative is by MP Tapir Gao in Parliament during the Budget discussion on 9 July 2019. This is the first time an MP talked about Vijoynagar area.

AYSU Delegation to Itanagar

Photo of AYSU Delegation (Left to Right): Shokoye, Yofuna, Nomasay, Salina, Dilihey, Josawu, Sosadi, Ngwazosa, Lewadi and Gujusa

The All Yobin Students Union (AYSU) made a purposeful visit to Itanagar from 2 – 11 June 2017. The team met several key officers and leaders –Chief Minister, Chief Secretary, AAPSU President, Education Minister, BJP State President, BJP State Gen Secy, AITF General Secy and our Local Minister. The discussion with the Education Minister was published at AP Times Readers Forum.

A detailed deliberation with the Chief Minister on 8th June took place. The team forwarded for news release to the newspapers (AP Times & Eastern Sentinel) twice but did not appear. Below is the summary of the meeting with Chief Minister:

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The Yobin have a lot of unresolved issues left unattended by the government during the last four decades. With these areas that require immediate action, the executive members of the All Yobin Students Union (AYSU) called on the Chief Minister, Pema Khandu at his chamber on 8th June. The AYSU was accompanied by the local MLA cum Minister of WRD Shri Kamlung Mossang. A memorandum was submitted for the following grievances.

1. First, for restoration of the Scheduled Tribe status to the Yobins. The GoAP notified Yobin as ST by the Extra Ordinary Gazette (no. 82, vol xxii dated: 30 March 2015) but the Article 342 has been misapplied in the case of Yobins. Objection was to the misapplication of the law, NOT to the tribe. Hence, that order was cancelled on 25 January 2017 but the government did not provide any option to relief our problem. The CM assured to take up with the Central Government to make this reality at the earliest as he had done earlier. He convened a meeting on Yobin ST issue on 21 April and the matter taken to the Govt of India.

2. Second, for the Miao-Vijoynagar Road to be completed soon. Since the road completed in 1975, it was not maintained, the road therefore became almost untraceable. A PMGSY scheme provided fund with the laying of foundation stone by the then Union Rural Minister Jairam Ramesh in 2011. Unfortunately, the tender was given to contractors, instead of the demand of the public to be given to BRO. As feared, the work never progressed till today. We still have to walk four days on foot. Nothing changed during the last 6 years. The CM sympathized with our struggles in road communication. He promised a special meeting will be called on the 22 June to take this case forward.

3. Third, for the Settlers of Vijoynagar to be restricted to the land the government has allotted. The Assam Rifles Ex-Service Settlers were brought in to Vijoynagar in the 1960s. Specific plots of land were provided for them both for residence and agricultural purposes on a lease of 30 years, with tax to be paid to government. The first renewal was done in 1990 and the next due in 2020. But now the settlers are coming out of their settlement areas and encroaching our land. These illegal activities were reported to the local administration, Circle Officers. No decisions and action has been taken to safeguard the indigenous people. This problem was reported to the CM and requested that action to be taken so that the Settlers would confine and be satisfied with the land the government allotted them and not beyond and disturb the local harmony. The CM would do a study and call on a decision.

We grateful to the HCM for his kindness and willingness to look into the needs people of this border area. We look forward to see the promises fulfilled and provide us relief from current difficulties.

Centre clears road project in Arunachal Pradesh–a note

This is one of the most precise news items I read on MV Road. Lots of information are compact within this small space. The only weakness: There is no report on WHEN the construction will begin. (Liahey)

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Centre clears road project in Arunachal Pradesh By Sushanta Talukdar (The Hindu, 29 October 2013)

It is the country’s longest road project under PMGSY

The Centre has cleared the 157 km Miao-Vijaynagar road project that will connect the remote Vijaynagar circle in Changlang district of Arunachal Pradesh along the India-Myanmar border, 100 km of it passing through the Namdapha National Park.

Touted to be the longest road project under the Prime Minister’s Gram Sadak Yojana, it will have altogether 25 bridges along its stretch.

At present, there is no road to this border area with 13 recognised villages and one unrecognised settlement. For over 5,000 people of these villages, the only alternative to air transport is a six-day walk from Vijaynagar to the nearest town Miao through the dense jungles of Namdapha. There is no electricity in Vijaynagar.

The Miao-Vijaynagar road was motorable till 1976 and has fallen into disrepair since then. The project, estimated to cost about Rs. 160 crore, is targeted to be completed in four years, Union Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh told The Hindu on Monday. When completed, it will directly link the Advanced Landing Ground of Vijaynagar, considered to be one of the toughest ALGs in the country at an altitude of 4,200 feet, and also an Assam Rifles post that was opened in 1962 in this remote and strategic frontier.


The project is estimated to cost Rs. 160 crore and will be completed in four years.

On completion, the road will directly link Vijaynagar’s ALG


MV Road as of October 2013

Last week a relative of mine came from Shidi to Miao. He walked all the way, all the 157 km. He did the same even on his way back to the village except for the 22 miles they could hire a pick up truck.

In reality the road remains in the same condition since its inauguration by Hon’ble Rural Minister, Jairam Ramesh, on 19 February 2013, Miao.

News appeared that the Minister will visit Vijoynagar for laying another foundation stone there in June. It was postponed to October 5. Again this did not happen. Let’s see when that will become a reality.

Only a question come to my mind: Why such delay?

  • Is it that our Vijoynagar public is too quiet, doesn’t seem to really care about it?
  • Is it because the State Govt. is not efficient on follow up with the Rural Minister?
  • Or is it because the Central Govt is not releasing the promised fund under PMYGS?

Nothing is clear. What can we do to gain clarity on this?

Earlier posts on MV Road

  1. MV Road – after inauguration
  2. Miao – Vijoynagar Road: Sign of completion

The induced slow death of MV Road

Source: The Assam Sentinel, 01 August 2010 (accessed: 10 August 2010).

ITANAGAR, Aug 1: Several remote areas near the international borders that Arunachal share with neighboring countries are still bereft of road communication. Roads were never in existence. In contrary, Vijaynagar in Changlang district had a motorable road connecting it with Miao. For obvious reasons the road, known as MV Road, was induced a slow death time-wrapping Vijaynagar to the early days of civilization.

Inhabitants of Vijaynagar mostly the Yobins, aboriginal Arunachalee tribe and Gorkhalis, who were settled by Government of India during 1961-62, track for 10 days – to and fro – along the dangerous porter tracks to buy essential commodities from Miao, 157 miles away. In contrast to the popular understanding that there was never a road connecting Vijaynagar, there was, in fact, a motorable road till about three decades back.

“After the first administrative set up was made functional in 1962, Miao-Vijaynagar (MV) road was motor-able and four wheelers like jeep used to reach Vijaynagar till 1975. The then Lt. Governor K A A Raja had visited Vijaynagar in a jeep. But after that the maintenance of this road was totally closed for reason unknown. Labors involved in road construction and maintenance was withdrawn by the government and in due course of time the road was totally closed,” informed Phusa Yobin, President of the Yobin Tribe Welfare Committee (YTWC).

The closure of the road has pushed back the natives of the place into the past. According to Phusa, the government subsequently halted the supply of essential commodities through air sorties without citing any reasons.

“Presently FPIs and CPOs in Vijaynagar remain empty…. salt costs us Rs 55 per kg!” lamented Phusa.

Government’s decision to ignore development of the MV Road between 1975 and 1983 is beyond comprehension and baffling in the context of geographical importance of the last border town, Vijaynagar, along the international boundary with Burma. As if depriving the natives of a good road was not sufficient, in subsequent years the government almost made it impossible forever for the road to even exist.

“The little hope of MV road being revived was lost forever once the Namdapha National Park came into being in 1983. Now, the park authorities’ object to even minor maintenance of the road – that has eventually turned into a porter track – as it falls within the reserved park,” Phusa rued.

Was the decision to convert the Namdapha area into a national park already taken by the authorities after the visit of Lt. Governor KAA Raja? Or else what could hold back subsequent governments to ignore strategic border town’s road maintenance? It is surprising that government felt it more important to safeguard wild-lives at the cost of development of aboriginal Yobin tribes and national security.

Lest the state government or the central government changes its policy, this small town with populace of 6000 India citizens including Army personnel and ex-servicemen will have to keep walking like in early days of human civilization. There is a need for governments – centre and state – to revisit the development of MV road beyond the realms of vote-banks politics. After all MV road is not just about 2000 Yobins

MV Road – after inauguration

On February 19, 2013 the Union Minister for Rural Development, Jairam Ramesh, unveiled the inauguration stone for Miao – Vijoynagar Road. Nothing happen last four months.

Another news appeared on June 6, there will be sanction of funds for the road (TOI).

The goodnews is that the Minister will visit Vijoynagar on 16 – 17 June 2013 “to take first hand information about the area among other works”.

Jairam Ramesh at the laying of foundation stone (Photo: The Miao Times).

Jairam Ramesh at the laying of foundation stone (Photo: The Miao Times).

Details on foundation stone (Photo: The Miao Times).

Details on foundation stone (Photo: The Miao Times).