15 May, 2021

Alien Rumblings

The Chakmas find it very difficult to live in their adopted state

Alien Rumblings

FOR the 65,000 Chakma settlers in Arunachal Pradesh, life has not become any easier, despite a Supreme Court stricture earlier this year, directing the state government to refrain from deporting them. The Supreme Court had even asked the Chakmas to apply for Indian citizenship, but most of the refugees are yet to get hold of the forms.

The plight of the Chakmas, who migrated from the Chittagong hill tracts of erstwhile East Pakistan in 1964, was summed up by Subimal Chakma of the World Chakma Organisation: "Our people have to secure the citizenship forms from the district commissioners at Lohit, Papumpare and Changlang. Most of the people have to come from remote areas and there is no security for them.

Phuloram Chakma (50) was attacked and killed by some local toughs a few days ago at Medo while returning from work. There have been other incidents as well. As a result, we cannot go to the headquarters to get the requisite forms. The administration, which wants us to quit the state, takes no notice of our complaints."...

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