Once bitten twice shy - but for some, they never seem to learn a lesson. It was thought that the administration would learn a lesson from their mistake that they made around same time last year when they passed on the baton to juveniles instead of weilding the baton themselves which led to tension along Arunachal-Assam border. But no. They made the same mistake again this year and even supported the act. The result- economic blockade along National Highway NH-52, the lifeline of Arunachal Pradesh, by All Assam Minority Students' Union (AAMSU) against the recent drive to detect and deport illegal migrants by students' bodies of Arunachal, damage of public and private vehicles bearing Arunachal registration, attack on the people of Arunachal along the stretch of Kimin & Banderdewa (Assam side) and finally injuring of 12 protestors by law enforcing agencies to bring the situation under control.
It all started with All Papum Pare District Students' Union (APPDSU) and All Nyishi Students' Union (ANSU) serving quit notices on 6th September to illegal migrants to leave the state within 5 days, in the wake of reported increase in cases of burglary, theft, conspiracy to murder and other serious crimes allegedly involving the so-called 'illegal Bangladeshi' migrants at Capital Complex. The first phase of 'Operation Clean Drive' was carried out on September 12th where the supporter's of students' union supposedly took the law into their own hands and physically went about evicting the 'illegal Bangladeshi migrants'.
This provoked the All Assam Minority Students' Union (AAMSU) to clamp indefinite economic blockade at Banderdewa and Kimin-the two entry points to Arunachal and to take on the streets vandalising the vehicles bearing Arunachal registration and assault on the passenger's on 18th of September; alleging that unnecessary and unlawful harrassment has been meted out to the genuine minorities from Assam living at Arunachal Pradesh with law enforcing authorities becoming just a mute spectator to the entire drama.
“We have decided to impose an indefinite economic blockade on Arunachal Pradesh in protest against the anti-migrant drive which saw an exodus of at least 2,000 to 3,000 Muslims from Arunachal Pradesh. We announced our decision on the road blockade at a meeting, which was attended by 10,000 Muslims, at Laluk in North Lakhimpur yesterday. The union strongly condemned the atrocities meted out to the innocent labourers by student unions in the name of detection and deportation of illegal migrants,” Rahman said from Laluk over phone today.(Source)
However, with the interference of district administration from both the states, the situation has been diffused a bit and a meeting of the officials of both the districts Papum Pare and North Lakhimpur has been fixed for tomorrow to discuss the matter in presence of public and the unions. The outcome of the meeting is awaited.
Now the question that comes to mind is had this 'ugly situation' been averted? And the answer is, hopefully, yes, had the administration weilded the baton themselves and had carried out the detection and deportation of illegal migrants plaguing the state, lawfully. I wonder, why didn't the administration learnt from their past mistake of allowing students' union to carry out 'Operation Clean Drive' last year which resulted in almost similar kind of tension? Why did the administration shirked away from their responsibility this year too?
(Picture at top- source The Arunachal Times)