Chavan to visit Arunachal to study demand for autonomous region

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Itanagar, Oct 23 (UNI) Union Minister of State in PMO Prithviraj Chavan is scheduled to visit Arunachal Pradesh soon to meet the people and prepare the ground for discussion with the Prime Minister on the demand for constituting two autonomous regions in the state.

The people of Tawang and West Kameng districts have demanded creation of Mon Autonomous Region (MAR) while those from Tirap and Changlang have been demanding for creation of Patkai Autonomous Region (PAR). The state Assembly had already passed a resolution in this regard.

According to official sources here today, Mr Chavan gave his consent when a delegation, led by Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu and representatives of the demand committee, including MLA and chairman of MAR T G Rinpoche and Speaker Setong Sena, chairman of PAR, called on him at New Delhi on Monday last.

Mr Chavan suggested that the demands need to be resolved through dialogues and accordingly he would be visiting both the regions personally to meet the people and prepare the ground for discussion with the Prime Minister.

The minister also assured that he would arrange the meeting of the demand committees with the PM within November for further discussion on the matter, sources informed.

Anticipating that the demand committees would appreciate the assurance, Mr Khandu appealed to both the panels not to agitate and adopt peaceful means of dialogue to resolve the issue.

The demand for creating autonomous region was raised in the state Assembly in March last in the backdrop of China repeatedly claiming territory of this Himalayan state. The Assembly during 2004 also unanimously approved the issue.

The demand committees reasoned that with creation of autonomous district councils in line with Meghalaya's Khasi, Jaintia and Garo autonomous district councils, all the four backward districts could be developed at par with other districts in the state.

19 legislators of those four districts had constituted a Joint Legislators' Forum for the purpose and had univocally pleaded with the state government to pursue the Centre to honour their demand.


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