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2012
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May 22

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News Impact

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Youth to Edge

ITANAGAR, May 21: The three months old adventure camp “Youth to Edge” conducted at Roing concluded on May 9. The camp was organized by the Ministry of Sports and Youth Affairs and funded by DoNER Ministry Govt. of India. The programme was implemented in the state by Sports & Youth affairs, Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh as a part of NSS for the youth of the country.

10 batches comprising of 500 NSS volunteers from different states participated in the pilot scheme. They came from states like Orissa, Delhi, Nagaland, Manipur, Mizoram, Tripura, West Bengal, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand.

The camp was basically touched upon subject like the art of listening, overcome fear of rejection, understanding of environment variables of gender & region diversity, conflict resolution and effective communication and negotiation.

The Roing chapter of camp took place under the guidance of Tine Mena, the first lady Everester of the state.  “Arunachal Pradesh has a tremendous scope and potential of conducting every type of adventure activities. It is a “Gold Mines” of Adventure sports in the country. The thickest jungles, fast flowing rivers, vast valleys where all types of adventure sports could be conducted. We have very beautiful, mesmerizing and challenging mountains, many of which are still unexplored and are very suitable for conducting mountaineering Expeditions. After seeing such huge potentials of water sports & eco tourism in the State, The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports, Govt. of India & Ministry of DoNER selected Arunachal Pradesh to conduct Adventure trails “Youths to the Edge” at Roing, Lower Dibang Valley,” informed DR. K.R. Meetei, Nodal Officer, Sports & Youth Affairs,   Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh.

 The last day of the programme was attended by Laeta Umbrey, local MLA Roing. Also present was   Dr.K.R. Meetei, Nodal Officer of the programme.

 

Ban on hunting and fishing

ITANAGAR May 21:  Kassar Valley Welfare Organization has prohibited the hunting and fishing using explosive at its areas. Stressing the importance of wildlife protection, the organization said that  the violators of the ban order will be imposed heavy fine.

The ban came after the awareness campaign on wildlife protection and preservation. The campaign sponsored by the environment and forest government department was organized at Bana in East Kameng recently.

 

89 days staff of NEEPCO Yazali serve ultimatum

ITANAGAR, May 21: All local and non-local 89 days basis employees of RHEP NEEPCO Ltd, Yazali have served a 15 days ultimatum to the NEEPCO CMD to fulfill their demands for   regularization of service within May 31.  

In an ultimatum addressed to the chairman cum managing director of the NEEPCO on May 16,  the 89 days employees said that they would  launch phase-wise agitation in case of failure of the  NEEPCO higher authority to meet its demand within the given time.

The ultimatum further said that 89 days staff would be compelled to registrar protest against the authorities by wearing black badge on June 4 as first phase of agitation if the authorities does not pay heed to its demand and the agitation will continue in various phases. The all 89 days employees resented that  till date they have only received assurance but their demand was not fulfilled.

 

Farmers training prog

ITANAGAR, May 21: Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK), Lohit conducted two training programmes on “Integrated Pest Management of maize” and “Integrated Disease Management of rice” for the farmers of Barbeel and Solungtoo village on May 15 and 16 respectively.

The subject matter specialist on Plant Protection thoroughly discussed about the concept of IPM and IDM, its importance for increasing production and sustainable development. Discussions were also held on types of pests and diseases, their control measures. The details of IPM and IDM in maize and rice were explained to the farmers.  A total of 55 farmers, 33 in Barbeel and 32 in Solungtoo, attended the training programmes.

 

ANYA interaction prog

ITANAGAR, May 21: All Nyishi Youth Association-Capital Complex Unit (ANYA CCU) conducted an interaction programme on May 19 at Naharlagun yesterday which was attended by additional district magistrate Talo Potom, former AAPSU president Tadar Dominic, ANYA president  Bamang Taji and all other executives members of ANYA. The programme marked the launching of ANYA calendar 2012.

During the programme, Potom delivered the word of encouragement and appreciated ANYA for their commitment toward welfare of the society.

 

Boogie Woogie

ITANAGAR, May 21: A total of 21 participants were selected in the auditions for Arunachal Boogie Woogie Dance Competition 2012 of two districts West Kameng and East Kameng which was conducted recently. The dance competition is scheduled to start from May 26.

The selected participants are: Bunchung Dema, Chotten Jangmu, Dawa Tsering, Jasmine Sangchoju, Nunu Longten, Passang Atjepu, Passang Tsering, Sapna Miji, Sonu Tamang, Taingko Singpho, Tsering Gombu, Damka Tayam, Shanti Neri, Laxmi Mangm, Sonam Yangfo, Koro Bana, Yarkam Bana, Anita Pizi, Ganga Yangda, Biru Gyadi, Jay Dadda.

 

RSS Sangh Shiksha Varg Concluded

ITANAGAR, May 21: The 20-day Sangha Shiksha Varg (OTC) of the Arunachal Pradesh chapter of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh concluded at Abotani Vidya Niketan, Pachin with demonstration of physical drills by swayamsevaks.

The 62 swayamsevaks from 44 places of 11 districts of Arunachal Pradesh presented Niyuddh, danda, Yogasan, leizim and mass drill with utmost perfection and satisfaction of all the trainers.

Speaking on the occasion, Everester Tapi Mra explained to the youth swayamsevaks how his determination and readiness to face the challenges and difficulties have pushed him to the height of success. He also said that our real identity is the culture and traditions that we have inherited from the forefathers and we should preserve it at any cost.

Executive Engineer PHED, Capital division Tadar Mongku in his brief address explained how the patriotism and service activities of the RSS have helped the society move forward and called upon the swayamsevaks to possess firm will and determination to achieve the goals.

Krishnagopal Sharma, Sah Sarkaryavah (Joint General Secretary) of RSS in his address as key speaker said that the pinnacle of success cannot be achieved without firm determination and endeavour. Listing out the various practices adopted in the Sangh Shakhas to acquire perfect coordination of the head, heart and hands and perfect discipline, Sharma said that the patriotic spirit of the countrymen and the Swayamsevaks keeps them always ahead to do the best possible to their country.

Citing the contributions of Metroman Shridharan as example, Sharma said that the sense patriotism and belongingness to the nation  help  the people to do good things. He suggested the youths to become noble citizen of country by working sincerely in the respective fields.

Everester Tine Mena also attended the function.

Centre’s ambitious defense prog runs into trouble

“We won’t part with our land”

Taba Ajum

ITANAGAR, May 21: The decision of the government of India to expand some of the important existing ‘advance landing ground’ (ALG) in Arunachal has not gone down well for the locals who are going to be affected by such move.

Keeping in mind the Chinese threat, Govt of India had decided to expand ALGs located at Vijoynagar, Pasighat, Mechukha, Walong, Tuting and Ziro. The people of Ziro valley is bitterly opposing the decision to expand ALG situated in old Ziro area. The project will affect two villages, namely, Dutta and Bulla. The villagers of Dutta village which are going to bear maximum effect of the expansion of airfield, are leading the fight to stop the project. The villagers do not want to part away with their traditional land to make way for the project.

Hiinyo Tai, secretary of PAPH Nehaboo village welfare committee, while talking to this journalist informed that people of Dutta village will not give even an inch of land for the project.

“80% of the land for the existing airfield was donated by people of Dutta village. No compensation was paid at that time. Govt did promise to give jobs to the project affected villagers but later they did not stand up to their promises.  Now again they want our land. We cannot trust them and therefore will never give our land,” said Hiinyo Tai. He further added, “We are not against development. Therefore, we had offered alternate land to government so that project is not shelved. However government is insisting on renovating the present airfield.” He also informed that locals often get ill treatment by the airport authorities.

“Sometimes when local villagers pass through the airfield, the security officials ill-treat them. They have no respect for the local sentiments. Children and old men are given punishment for passing through airfield. Adding insult to our injury, district administration has banned construction activities within 100 metre from the airfield. Now we can’t construct anything in our land,” added Tai.

The old Ziro airfield was constructed in the year 1951 and first Dakota plane landed in 1952. The airfield had its share of misfortune from the time of its establishment.

On 13th May 1958, an IAC  Dakota plane crashed while trying to land. In another incident on 21st September 2007 early morning, a helicopter, which could not land at Ziro airfield because of thick fog, had to make emergency landing at Bulla Middle School football ground. The incident sent shockwaves among the local citizen. It also exposed the vulnerability of how dangerous it is to have airfield in the middle of the town. Ziro airfield is surrounded by villages and in case of any unfortunate incident, it can have catastrophic effect. It is observed that most of the airports across the world are situated on the outskirts of the city. Therefore, demand of people of Dutta villages cannot be neglected at least on safety term. State govt needs to give patient hearing to project affected people before going ahead with the project.

 

Chayang Tajo and other pockets in East Kameng under the grip of FMD

ITANAGAR, May 21: When the people of East Kameng district were recovering from the huge losses of cattle (mithun) population in 2010-11 due to foot and mouth disease (FMD), the menace is back to haunt again. Last time, the epidemic started from Sagalee in the east, this time around from the west, in remote Chayang Tajo.  Minthuns’ exposure to infected cows brought in from outside is the reason for resurfacing of the disease.

Yangfo, Kesse, Jayang Bagang, Wada, Kello, Rebe, Namchar, Soshi, Tagampu, Tarawa, Sangchu and many more villages are currently under the grip of the epidemic. Mithuns are falling dead here and there, informed Dahey Sangno, CO who is in charge Sub-Divisional Officer Chayang Tajo.

Foot and mouth disease (FMD) is a highly contagious viral disease of domesticated cloven-footed and many wild animals characterized by erosion of the mucosa of the mouth and hoof. Mithun is comparatively more susceptible to FMD than other livestock species.

Nervous and worried villagers are combing the forest to locate their mithuns.

 The total losses could not be ascertained so far. All that can be said for sure is that: the numbers of dead are increasing day by day. And it is spreading fast to nearby circles, Sangno further said.

As if this is not enough to torment the poor and hapless souls, pigs and domestic fowls are dying alongside the mithuns. Now all eyes are set on the Government’s timely intervention. Although the villagers who have lost their cattle last time were not compensated or provided with relief, still, they are hopeful that their people’s first government would not disappoint them this time. The entire Chayang Tajo sub-division has only one Veterinary Field Assistant (VFA) to represent the department of Veterinary and Animal Husbandry with a defunct dispensary.

By a couple of weeks’ time, it is feared, the whole district would be swallowed by the epidemic.

Even Richukrong, Bana, Watte are reported to be affected by FMD.

Deputy Director of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Dr Tachi Taku when contacted said that the Directorate is awaiting a report from the district administration. Instead of being victim of bureaucratic hassles, the department need to act fast to stop further spread of the disease.

 

 

Arunachal remembers Rajiv Gandhi

ITANAGAR May 21: Alongwith with the rest of the country, Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC)  has observed the 21st death anniversary of former Prime Minister Late Rajiv Gandhi as Martyrdom Day at Rajiv Gandhi Congress Bhawan here today.

Remembering the contributions of visionary leader, Chief Minister Nabam Tuki  termed Rajiv Gandhi as the pioneer of modern India who always believed youth as the backbone in nation building. Tuki said that late leader’s love and attachment to Arunachal would always be remembered.

Former Chief Minister Gegong Apang urged all party workers to be disciplined and works for all round development of the state. Arunachal Pradesh Mahila Congress Committee Yari Dolum in her speech pointed out that former PM was instrumental in IT and telecommunication development in India and women reservation and strengthening Panchayati Raj institution. The  programme was also attended by various party leaders’ including ministers, parliamentary secretaries and frontal wing workers.

Meanwhile INTUC Pradesh Branch A.P along with its affiliated bodies All Arunachal Pradesh Workers Union also observed the 21st death anniversary of late Rajiv Gandhi as Anti-Terrorism Day here today.

Jalley Sonam, Working President INTUC Pradesh Branch (AP) and Changma Tajo, General Secretary INYUC Pradesh Branch highlighted the visions of late Gandhi and asked the members to promote peace and harmony in the state.

On the occasion, members of both the unions paid their homage to late Gandhi. At Ziro, all heads of departments’ public leaders, NGO, SHG of Lower Subansiri district has observed the 21st May’2012 as the Anti Terrorism Day. The day was observed at DC’s office complex by taking pledge to fight against terrorism.

T. Murtem, EAC remembered the contributions of the former Prime minister for all round development of the country, specially in information and technology sector.

The death Anniversary of Former Prime Minister of India Late Rajiv Gandhi was observed in entire Changlang district as Anti -Terrorism Day. At district headquarters, deputy commissioner Opak Gao administered the pledge and appealed each and every one to solve any problem with mutual understanding  and promote peace and tranquility among cross section of the people.

 

 

AAPPTF demands review of corridor agreement

Staff Reporter

ITANAGAR, May 21: The plying permit issued by state government has been treated as invalid in Assam despite signing of corridor agreement between Assam government and Arunachal Government, said All Arunachal Pradesh Public Transport Federation (AAPPTF) President Takar Goi in a press conference held today at Press club, Itanagar. Although the corridor agreement was signed between Assam government and Arunachal Government in recent past, vehicles from most of the districts of the Arunachal Pradesh plying from one district to another touching Assam road and are facing lot of difficulties, he said.

At present the agreement is also not valid in Assam whereas the same agreement is still valid in Arunachal Pradesh. He urged the state government to take up the matter with Assam government and implement or review the corridor agreement in toto.

Goi further expressed his displeasure over growing unemployment and loss of state revenue. Informing that there are 42,400 commercial vehicles in the state he said 3400 vehicles are being hired by Central and State Govt. establishments, corporations, private companies and NGOs. Out of 3400, only 200 vehicles are being hired from the state and rest 3200 vehicles are from outside the state.  Besides these most of the hired commercial vehicles are plying without valid plying permit and other necessary document.

The state government must issue an order to stop hiring of vehicle from outside the state as such hiring of vehicle directly affect the economy of state and the unemployed youth who are sustaining on such vehicles after procuring with bank loans, he added.

AAPPTF General Secretary Dobing Sonam also expressed his unhappiness saying that the state government is not addressing the demands of AAPPTF for the last many years.

He said that Transport department is playing important role in collection and generation of revenue for the state exchequer running into crores of amounts. Despite collection of huge revenue the government is not providing sufficient fund to the transport department.

There are only nine DTOs and three MVIs in the state.  In some places COs and EACs are looking after transport related matters.

He urged the GoAP to create eight more DTOs and favorable numbers of MVIs posts and other office staff including driver with the provision of vehicle and other basic amenities to each DTO within this fiscal for better functioning and revenue earning.

Sonam further demanded the government to reconsider Govt order of levying 12.5% entry tax on commercial vehicles purchased from outside the state. He said that instead of levying higher tax the government should impose nominal rate of 2% to 3 % entry tax.

Adding that the levy of additional tax in the form of entry tax or double taxation in the state is a harassment to vehicle buyers and the unemployed youth of the state who buy vehicles on loan, he said.

He further urged that state government to relax the existing road tax from 10 to 6 years as road tax for a  period of ten years is unreasonable as the life expectancy of vehicles in state is very low as compared to other states.

He also informed that AAPPTF had signed a MoA with Arunachal State Co-Operative Apex Bank to provide loan to unemployed youth to procure commercial vehicles to generate self-employment. However, due to non-availability of required motor vehicles  with dealers in the state, the  people have to buy motor vehicles from outside the state. Moreover, due to imposition of 12.5% additional tax and to escape unnecessary problem in Assam, the vehicle users registered their vehicle from Assam resulting loss of state revenue, he added.

The AAPPTF team also urged the state government to initiate necessary step for immediate completion of the under-construction Inter State Bus Terminal (ISBT), Karsingsa and appealed the people to cooperate with the executing agency of Holongi to Itanagar road for early execution of the work.

Meanwhile, All Arunachal Public Bus Welfare Association (AAPBWA) appealed to the state government to evict the electrical pole being planted near Bus stoppage points in different location and to earmark more Bus stoppage in Itanagar and Naharlagun.

The Federation threatens that, if AAPPTF’s demands are not fulfilled within the stipulated time, AAPPTF will launch movement against the government and conduct series of meeting with the vehicle owners to stop pay vehicle taxes to state government.

 

 

Pakke ready to welcome visitors

ITANAGAR, May 21: In a major step to attract more number of visitors and researchers to Pakke Tiger Reserve and Wildlife sanctuary situated near Seijosa under East Kameng district, today a newly built forest rest house was inaugurated by Parliamentary Secretary for Environment and Forest CT Mein. The rest house built within the premises of Pakke Tiger Reserve and Wildlife sanctuary has been built under TFC Scheme and it cost department rs 24 lacs.

Mein stated that he would give top priority to make Pakke Tiger Reserve and Wildlife sanctuary along with Namdhapa Wild Life Sanctuary as world class sanctuaries. “I believe that we can compete with African countries to attract wild life lovers to Arunachal. Sanctuaries like Pakke and Namdhapa are assets for state. Local people need to help concern authorities to safeguard these sanctuaries,” said CT Mein. He also emphasized the need for tapping timber potential state of state.  Also present during the inauguration was Health Minister Atum Welly who is also local MLA and JL Singh, PCCF (Wild Life and Biodiversity).

 

Meanwhile, reacting to the report published in this daily  stating that wildlife meats being sold in various markets of capital, CT Mein called upon his officers and police officials to take strong action against such illegal poachers. “I am quite shock to see wildlife meats being sold openly in the markets of capital complex. Action should be initiated against those poachers and punishment be given as per the provision of law,” Mein added.

 

 

PPA supports Sangma’s candidature

ITANAGAR, May 21: People’s Party of Arunachal (PPA) extended its support to former Lok Sabha Speaker and NCP strongman of North-East P A Sangma’s candidature for the presidential election.

The party appealed to all national and regional political parties in the country and elected leaders of the North-eastern states to come out in support of  Sangma irrespective of their political affiliations.

“Sangma is aspiring for the Presidentship of the country as a representative of the region as well as scheduled tribes communities in the country for the first time in the history of presidential election. Till date, no tribal community has had the opportunity to hold the nation’s top post,” PPA said in a release. His election as President of India would be a kind of recognition to the contribution made by the scheduled tribes communities in the country to the nation, the release added.

 

 

Forest dept and WTI distribute rice to people affected by

man-elephant conflict

ITANAGAR, May 21: Arunachal Pradesh Forest Department and Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) distributed 10,000 kg rice among 100 families residing around human-elephant conflict areas at Pakke Tiger Reserve, Seijosa under the grain-for-grain programme today at Seijosa.

The foodgrains were distributed under WTI’s Rapid Action Projects supported by the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation (DSWF) and Samaritan Lakshmy Reddy.

“People residing in the vicinity of Pakke are highly-affected by wildlife crop depredation problems. Wild elephants have extensively damaged agriculture crop of 100 families of poor farmers during 2011-2012, The foodgrains are being distributed to those families to provide them some relief,” said Tana Tapi, Divisional Forest Officer, Pakke Wildlife Division.

The grain-for-grain scheme was conceptualized by WTI to provide relief to farmers, as well as to help reduce instances of retaliations against the pachyderms, under a study funded by the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Launched in Pakke Tiger Reserve in 2005, the concept now finds mention in the ‘Gajah’ report prepared by the Elephant Task Force in 2010. Since its launch, the scheme supported by various agencies and individuals has benefited hundreds of households around Pakke Tiger Reserve.

“This is not compensation, but a measure to give succor to those affected families,” explained Sunil Kyarong, Regional Head – Northeast India, WTI, who was a part of the team that conceptualized grain-for-grain.

Around 400 humans are killed in conflicts with wild elephants in India each year and 100 elephants killed in retaliation.

“Through this scheme, we are creating a ‘bargain’ to ensure that conflicts don’t go out of hand, as it can not only cause more casualties but also negate conservation initiatives,” Kyarong added.

The grain was distributed to the beneficiary households at an event held today in Seijosa.

 

 

Siram calls for well defined AOP

ZIRO, May 21: Education Minister Bosiram Siram called upon the officers and staff of his department to make a concerted effort to give a new dimension to education sector in the state.

The school education is plagued with numerous problems like poor infrastructure, non- availability of trained teachers, lack of teachers training institutes, geographical difficulty, communication bottleneck, indiscipline amongst students etc, but this problems can be redressed with committed and dedicated efforts, Siram said while attending the pre-annual operating plan 2012-2013 of Education Department at Hapoli today.

“We have got to work to save our children and do it with full respect for the fact that if we do not, no one else is going to do it,”

The Education Minister said that the main aim of the meeting was to prepare a unique and well defined AOP for 2012-2013 and for transforming the existing educational pattern into a truly dynamic system through discussion and consultation.

Parliamentary Secretary Padi Richo highlighted the problem faced in the education sector in the district. He also requested all the DDSE’s to clearly mention the area covered by the schools and enable the government to be registered in the Directorate of Land Management to avoid future encroachment.

Ganesh Koyu, Commissioner & Secretary Education and Tapang Taloh, Director Education also spoke on the occasion and expressed the hope that a collective efforts would definitely help the system grow, evolve and achieve greater height.

Topics including students stipend, textbook, calendar of activities, examination, adult education, SBM, RMSA, SSA, Mid-day meal, teachers education, sports and youth services etc. were come up for discussion in the day-long meeting.

All DDSE’s of the district and the senior officers of the Directorate of Education present on the occasion.

Earlier in the morning, Siram and Richo participated in the programme organized on the occasion of 22nd Death Anniversary of former Prime Minister late Rajiv Gandhi at the office of the District Congress Committee, Hapoli. DIPRO

 

 

D. Ering Wildlife Sanctuary needs Govt’s attention

ITANAGAR, May 21: Chief Conservator of Forest (CCF), Central Circle, RK Singh accompanied by DFOs Wildlife and Territory and Managing Director ‘Future Generations Arunachal (FGA)’ Nalong Mize visited Daying Ering Wildlife Sanctuary, Pasighat today.

The CCF was overjoyed by seeing the foot marks of Chambers, Hog Deers, and Wild Boar etc as he saw all these as soon as he put steps on Sanctuary after crossing Siang River. He was of the view that if it is well protected, it would be the best tourist centre in entire Arunachal Pradesh owing to its ideal location in a reverine  Island like Majuli of Assam. He was contended seeing the efforts put in by the staff in protecting the sanctuary which is gradually reviving under DFO T. Mize.

The CCF said: ‘I’ll try my level best to impress upon the concern head of the state and the nation so that this beautiful Sanctuary gets due share of attention’.

FGA Managing Director Mize also showed optimism on its becoming a tourist hub through Eco-Tourism once its infrastructures are installed. He also stressed on banning of issuing gun licenses and stop selling of cartridges which would reduce the mass hunting prevailing in Adi belt to a great extent.

On the other hand, B Darang DFO (T) was of the view that “it all needs political wills” as there are several incidents where political heavyweights are often found to involve in hunting or enjoying the meat of wild animals.

DFO (W/L) T Mize, who hosted the visit in co-operation with PRI leaders of fringe area ASM Borguli Yung and Oki Taruk, played a perfect host and gave stress on getting fringe peoples co-operation in reviving this once much revered Sanctuary without whose active participation his undying efforts are worthless.

 

 

Major bureaucratic reshuffle in Arunachal Pradesh

ITANAGAR, May 21: In a major bureaucratic reshuffle, the Arunachal Government on May 19 last issued transfer and posting orders of numbers of Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers and APCS officers.

According to the order, Ramesh Negi  has been posted as Development Commissioner (Planning and Finance), Sanjay Kumar Saxena is posted as Secretary (Power), Rajesh Kumar Mishra is posted as Deputy Commissioner East Siang District,  Tahang Taggu is posted as Deputy Commissioner Upper Subansiri District, Marnya Ete, Director, Supply and Transport/Civil Aviation, Naharlagun is posted as Deputy Commissioner, West Siang District, Sanjay Goel is posted as Deputy Commissioner, Itanagar Capital Complex, Naharlagun,  Sachin Shinde additional Deputy Commissioner, Basar is posted as Deputy Commissioner, Tirap District, Manoj Kumar Sahoo is posted as Secretary (Tax and Excise), HK Shalla Secretary Cooperation cum RCS is posted as Secretary (Food and Civil Supplies, Consumer Affairs and Legal Metrology), TT Gamdik, Secretary (Tax and Excise and Registrar, State Information Commission) is posted as Secretary, Handloom and Handicrafts, Fisheries and Cooperation, Kapa Kholie Secretary UD will hold the additional charge of Secretary, Geology and Mining and Lottery and MD APMDTCL, Itanagar, CP Mansai, Secretary Law and Judicial, Parliamentary Affairs will hold the additional charge of Registrar of State Information Commission. Tumke Bagra, Secretary Power is posted as Secretary, Science and Technology, W Lowang Deputy Commissioner, Tirap District is posted as Registrar of Cooperative Societies, Naharlagun, Talem Tapok, Deputy Commissioner, East Siang District is posted as Director, Supply and Transport and Civil Aviation, Onit Panyang, Deputy Commissioner, Itanagar Capital Complex, Naharlagun is posted as Secretary, Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission, Itanagar.

Meanwhile, consequent upon transfer and posting of Officers, Yeshi Tsering is relieved from the charge of Development Commissioner Finance, Bolung Siram is relieved from the charge of Secretary Food and Civil Supplies, M Pertin is relieved from the charge of Commissioner, Legal Metrology and Consumer Affairs/Geology and Mining and MD APMDTCL, Sonam Chombey is relieved from the charge of Secretary Lotteries, Kaling Tayeng is relieved from the charge of Secretary Fisheries, Bandhana Deori is relieved from the charge of Secretary, Handloom and Handicrafts, Hage Khoda is relieved from the charge of Commissioner Science and Technology and Indra Mallo Jain is relieved from the charge of Secretary, Arunachal Pradesh Public Service Commission, Itanagar.

 

 

Opium impact in the Mishmi Hills

Razzeko Dele

Opium has become a treat to be offered to guests and other important individuals. The priests occupy high position in the society and they are mostly treated with opium and wine. Today most of the priests are addicts and cannot dispense their duties without opium offerings.

The majestic Mishmi Hills have witnessed past glories, natural catastrophes and social upheavals. They withstood the Red Army and had literally faced Mao Tse Tung’s Barrels of the guns. These hills have nourished Mishmis since time immemorial and fascinated the people from other places. But in the recent past these hills are mostly in the news for wrong reasons like modern day menace Opium.

Though opium entered less than 150 years ago in Mishmi Hills but has gripped most sections of Mishmis. Today the Mishmi inhabited districts like Anjaw, Lohit, Lower Dibang Valley and some pockets of Dibang Valley are facing the acute danger of opium addictions.

With passage of time opium positioned itself in the economy and culture of the Mishmis. Now with time, the opium consumers have increased and so are the producers. Opium trades have reached hitherto unknown dimensions with the entry of brokers and peddlers from outside the community. Most of the youths and even many government employees have smoked out their health and wealth. Today the situation has worsened with students of schools and colleges falling in the deadly traps and becoming addicts.

I had mixed feelings when my friend Eringso Romat, Inspector Tax & Excise and Narcotics, Hawai, approached me to be the Resource Person for their department’s campaign against the Opium Addiction. There were apprehensions and pre-conceived notions. I was made to know that every one refrain from discussing opium impact on the people and society. With passage of time it had become a sort of tabooed subject to be discussed.

The team comprised of Senior Medical Officer, Horticultural Development Officer and Political Assistant besides me. When we were preparing for Campaign many well-wishers and friends suggested me not to denounce opium and its users directly. It was assumed that there may be confrontation with the villagers. I was advised to talk in a balanced way. But I made clear to them all that there can be no balanced view or two opinions about opium farming and its users. Opium is a menace from which our society needs to loosen itself.

After twelve days tour and interacting with people of 40 villages and hamlets, I have tried to highlight the thoughts and situations which led to such an abyss like situation.

 First of all the innocent villagers have accepted opium as part of their culture. Opium has become a treat to be offered to guests and other important individuals. The priests occupy high position in the society and they are mostly treated with opium and wine. Today most of the priests are addicts and cannot dispense their duties without opium offerings.

Most of the villagers are aware that opium effects adversely on health. They also understand that they can get addicted to it. But they are ignorant of Socio-Cultural and Economic impact of Opium consumption. Mostly they equate opium with bidi, cigarette or tobacco. Almost most of the villagers were of the opinion that imported liquors were more harmful than opium. Grand old Man of Bhaw village, lectured us thus, “When one consumes opium there is no quarrel between husband and wife. But after consuming liquor people fight with their family members and neighbors”. Many women felt the same. They find peace when their husband consumes opium instead of liquors. There were also instances in which women fed their drunkard husbands to save themselves from daily brawls.

For many families opium is the only source of income. Opium is also easy to grow and much more productive as well as more profitable compared to other crops. Growers need not go to market or even search for a customer. They get buyers in their villages itself.

According to many villagers they had tried horticultural farming like Cardamom but found suitable only in few places. Oranges and Kiwis take years to fruit and Kiwi farming becomes a costly affairs therefore most of them prefer to grow Opium.

There were also many villagers who were successful in quitting opium but had consumed it again on health ground. ASM of Shirong village told us that he had left consuming opium many years back. When his shoulder was injured, medicines could not relieve him of pain. It was only opium which could sooth his pains. There were many more people who took opium as a medicine but got addicted to it.

Many villagers positively and enthusiastically were of the opinion that opium should be eradicated from the society. Young ASMs of Kherang and Kamblat even were ready to be volunteers if government comes with policies and programs. Similarly ASM of Blong village thundered to his people, “why you people are not able to see the ills of opium consumption? You spend every penny on opium without thinking about your family members”.

In a similar way Gaon Bura of Manchal village exhorted the gathering, “I don’t understand why our people say that we cannot sustain our life without trading opium. We can search for alternatives. Mishmis have sustained and prospered without trading opium in the past. Opium trade is just a recent phenomenon”.

Young man of Samdul village explained his predicaments, “I was successful in quitting opium twelve times. But there was no social life for me as all of my friends consumed opium. I started smoking again to be in their company. Actually I had started it for passing time but now I’m addicted to it. I wish there were no opium in this world, we would have lived a healthier life”.

As, I have said earlier, opium had become a tabooed subject to be discussed. No government agency or stake holders of the society ever tried to spread awareness among the people.

GB of Lautul addressing the assembly informed us, “No one informs us in depth how much opium is dangerous for an individual and a society. We know that it is drugs, but for us it is similar to Bidi, Cigarette or tobacco. Imported liquor is more harmful. We just grow opium like mustard or maize. The educated youths and government officials who are supposed to aware us smoke opium with us”.

Contrary to our apprehensions, we were overwhelmed by the warm responses and welcomes showered on us by the villagers. They amazed us with their hospitality. There were no untoward incidents, nor criticism of whatever we said, not even any blame games which we see in today’s meetings.

Only in Blong village an old and seasoned Chikro lady, in her late 70s could not control her anger when she heard campaigners saying that, ‘government has every right to destroy the poppy fields’. She countered, “What government? Which government? Who says opium is very harmful? In my entire life, I have never seen people dying by consuming opium. But in the recent past many have died by consuming bottled imported liquors. Why government is flooding our area with wine shops? First they should be closed as they are source of all the ills in our society nowadays. If poppy fields are destroyed how people will send their children to schools. It is the only source of income here. During our need we don’t see any government helping us. They only come to destroy our fields. This is my land and I have the right to cultivate whatever I wish”.

No modern society can afford to justify the opium consumption, trade or its farming. Opium is a menace which should have no place in any society. There can be no two opinions about it. In the same breadth, we need to acknowledge the fact that as it has taken more than a century to grip the Mishmi society, it will not be an easy task to exterminate the drugs in a short span. All the stake holders of the land have to study, contemplate and calculate on how it can be fought without any adverse effects.

We need to interact more with the effected people, know their problems and spread awareness. Today consuming opium is a very normal thing in a Mishmi society. Opium leaves are eaten as vegetables. We need to infuse in the villager’s concise, the socio-cultural and economic impact of opium menace. Society has to accept that opium is a menace which must not be entertained in a modern society. First of all educated youths and government employees must abhor opium and stop consuming it. They must set an example to their villager brethrens.

Government must also show some other options and alternatives. HDO, Hawai, our co-campaigner informed us that, people of Anjaw had exported cardamom worth 8 crores last year. According to feasibility, villagers need to be encompassed under various horticultural schemes.

Government also should take stern actions against drug peddlers. But more importantly, the villagers need to be informed about basic narcotic laws. They need to understand the gravity of their crimes. The village level traders are mostly women who are trying to make their ends meet. For them selling opium is similar to selling wine or tobacco. They are also frequently exploited by brokers.

Narcotics department from centre had tried in the past to destroy the poppy fields but the action had adverse effects. Only destruction will not yield positive results. Before the cultivating season, the farmers should be warned and informed about growing opium. Earlier warning of destruction will enable farmers to grow optional crops. The confrontation arises when Narcotics team come to destroy the fields before the harvest only. People don’t like to see their toils being evaporated in thin air. Many of the families have single plot for their sustenance and confrontation becomes in-evitable. Only destruction will never be a solution as long as we have consumers. Destruction will lead the consumers to import opium which would have more graver and adverse effects on the society.

And also, people need De-addiction units. Lohit district has got one centre but with limited seats. One De-addiction unit can be established at Hayuliang. The Hayuliang hospital is going to be shifted at Khuppa district hospital. Hayuliang hospital can be converted into full fledged De-addiction centre.

After seeing responses of the people, I’m forced to become optimistic. People are now ready to understand and talk about the menace of opium. They just need some other alternatives to be shown for their sustenance in the tough terrain governed by un- predictive weathers. Government and all the stake holders of the society need to work hand in hand and steer the society towards the future where there is no place for substance like opium.

The writer is Assistant Professor in Indira Gandhi Government College, Tezu. He can be reached at [email protected]

 

Copyright © 2008, The Arunachal Times Publications Pvt. Ltd., Siang House, Sector - E, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh - 791111, India

All rights reserved.

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Students and livelihood

Dear Editor,

One concerned citizen has rightly stated that the students unions are using the drop out students of schools and colleges to pelt stones on the govt. vehicle and destroy public properties, using those innocents as their weapons for personal benefits.

Imagine the money involved in the students politics and interference of top politicians of the state. Now you can imagine how honestly they are electing the student's representatives by the blessing of top politicians to lead the students union. You can say that student leaders are the next gen corrupted leaders of the state. You see the assets, buildings, vehicles they own.. As far as my knowledge is concern, I do believe that student leaders are not paid monthly by any organization , institution, or by the government. So now my question is how they make money and assets within their short tenure, or is there any short cut method to earn!

My sincere request to the all students unions of this state is to go in a democratic way to solve the problems rather than call bandh frequently. At the same time I request the students unions to concentrate in the case related to the welfare of the student's only rather than looking into the matter of state and national level.

Yours,

A concerned citizen

Naharlagun

 

 

Unreliable govt website

Dear Editor,

Through your esteemed daily I would like to request the Government of Arunachal to atleast update and maintain the official website of the state i.e. www.arunachalpradesh. nic.in. The official website still shows the total numbers of district to be 16 whereas it is 18 by now. Wikipedia is also showing the same for no fault of theirs. The real culprit is the official website. It a shame and it would be a mistake to trust the information given on official website of the state for any exam. Better trust the local daily and GKs.

Yours,

Ajut

 

 

 

All email and surface mails must be accompanied with contact numbers and full postal address. Do keep writing but please make sure that letters are short and to the point.        

----Editor

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Maldives and malnutrition

Although Maldives has already achieved five of the eight Millennium Development Goals, including the goal of reducing the number of people suffering from hunger, nearly 17 per cent of its children remain underweight and up to 19 per cent suffer from stunting or low height-to-age ratio.

Contributing to this problem is the fact that few children are exclusively breastfed. Though both UNICEF and the World Health Organization recommend exclusive breastfeeding for 6 months, surveys suggest that less than 50 per cent of children are exclusively breastfed this long. The average duration of exclusive breast feeding is less than two and a half months.

A micronutrient survey conducted in 2007 showed that 81 per cent of children had received other liquids before 6 months of age. These practices can affect children’s mental and physical development.

Additionally, lack of a proper diet has meant that more than a quarter of Maldivian children between 6 months to 5 years old are anaemic, and nearly 60 per cent of children suffer from iron deficiency.

The good news is that  UNICEF is supporting the government’s efforts to reduce the numbers of malnourished children.