Itanagar: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu on Monday fervently appealed to all indigenous youths of Tirap, Changlang and Longding (TCL) districts, who have strayed away into an insurgency to come back and join the mainstream for a better Arunachal.
Khandu made this appeal on the auspicious occasion of Pongtu festival of the Tutsa community at Khonsa, the headquarters of Tirap district, official sources said.
“Insurgency is not a solution to any problem. TCL region has suffered a lot due to it. We want peace and we want development,” Khandu said while joining the celebration at the general ground, Khonsa.
He said that under the state government’s surrender policy, all such returnees will be taken care of and helped rejoin the mainstream. Appealing to all strayed youths to come back, surrender and embrace peace, he asserted violence and gun culture only end in bloodshed, which nobody wants.
Khandu also took serious note of the deaths of innocent civilians in anti-insurgency operations and cited these as serious collaterals of insurgency in the area. He informed that the state’s Director General of Police has been asked to coordinate with the security forces deployed in the region and evolve a proper SOP to avoid civilian casualties during such operations.
“Both the central and the state governments are serious and committed to bring a solution to this decades-old issue. Peace talks are going on and we put our faith on the central government and all stakeholders to iron out a permanent and peaceful solution sooner than later,” he said.
Observing that the three districts have immense potential for growth of tourism, Khandu assured he would push the central government to open up tourist circuits in the region. He informed that tourist circuits were not offered in TCL by the MHA on the ground that there were not enough police stations in view of providing security to visitors.
“This has changed in the last few years. I myself inaugurated several police stations in these three districts in recent times. Hopefully, the central government will accept our request,” he said.
Khandu, however, reminded that boosting tourism in the area and making it a sustainable livelihood will entirely depend upon the local residents. Government, through its various schemes, can just assist but the locals will have to voluntarily put in their efforts if tourism has to flourish, he said. He called upon local entrepreneurs and businessmen to invest in the sector, to begin with, sources added.