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|January 7, 1999||
Arunachal Congress rises to protect statehood
The ruling Arunachal Congress has appealed to the public and all political and non-political organisations to unitedly fight the divisive forces in the state.
In a statement, the party's top leaders condemned those who are "misguiding and terrorising" the people to carve a Union territory out of Arunachal Pradesh for "narrow and selfish political interests".
"Arunachalees are staunch nationalists and will never allow anti-national forces to succeed in their evil design," the statement said.
Expressing dismay that some disgruntled leaders had allegedly joined hands with the ultras to divide the state, they said, "No one should dare challenge the territorial integrity of Arunachal Pradesh and should never doubt the emotional bonds that exist among various indigenous tribal communities in the state."
The statement decried the "insensitive and callous attitude" of the earlier Congress government at the Centre towards the hopes and aspirations of Arunachal Pradesh after it attained statehood.
"Our indigenous tribal customary and traditional rights were not recognised and protected constitutionally as was done in the case of Nagaland and Mizoram. Our demand of deportation or removal of Chakma and Hajong refugees, in fact, was opposed by the then central government. Our demand to amend Article 371-H of the Constitution, which undermines the very status of statehood, was never entertained," it said.
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