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What The Citizenship Amendment Bill Means For Arunachal
What The Citizenship Amendment Bill Means For Arunachal

In Arunachal, a restricted state governed by the Inner Line Permit system, there is strong opposition to the Citizenship Amendment Bill, which if passed will ensure citizenship to the persecuted Tibetans, Chakmas and Hajongs

Nasreen Habib

When the Central government had given into popular sentiment in Arunachal by announcing limited citizenship status to Chakma and Hajong refugees and retracted on its earlier resolve to provide full citizenship to the two communities last year, the situation in Arunachal was still tense. The Chakmas and Hajongs had fled Bangladesh over 50 years ago to escape religious persecution and found refuge in Arunachal, then a part of NEFA (North East Frontier Agency). Over the years, there has been a tussle over land and resources between the indigenous communities and the Chakmas and Hajongs, and intense opposition to their recognition as ‘citizens’ with all constitutional rights, including the ownership of land.

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June 2018