Several members belonging to Chakma and Hajong community living in Arunachal Pradesh staged a protest at Jantar Mantar in New Delhi on Tuesday against racial profiling of the Chakma and Hajong tribals by the state government through a special census only for them.
The protest was led by Arunachal Pradesh Chakma Students Union (APCSU), the Committee for Citizenship Rights of the Chakmas and Hajongs of Arunachal Pradesh (CCRHCAP), Arunachal Pradesh Chakma and Hajong Students Association (APCHSA), and Chakma Development Foundation of India (CDFI).
As said by the protesters, the "special census" is part of the Arunachal Pradesh government's plan to relocate over 65,000 Chakmas and Hajongs out of the state.
It may be mentioned that Chakmas or Hajongs were settled between 1964 and 1969 in Bordumsa-Diyun and Kokila area in Changlang and Papum Pare district following an ethnic clash and a dam disaster in the Chittagong Hill Tracts of erstwhile East Pakistan (present Bangladesh). But tribal groups in Arunachal Pradesh have been agitating for years against their settlement.
Last year on August 15, Chief Minister Pema Khandu and Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju said that the Chakma and Hajong communities would be relocated outside Arunachal Pradesh.
This announcement was made even after the National Human Rights Commission had asked the state government in 1966 to offer Indian citizenship to the Chakmas and Hajongs. Also in 2015, the Supreme Court had asked the state government to offer Indian citizenship to them.
Meanwhile, the protestors submitted a memorandum to Union Home Minister Amit Shah stating that the "special census" is nothing but racial profiling and a violation of NHRC directives.