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Arunachal to form panel to safeguard indigenous people’s rights: Khandu

 ITANAGAR, Oct 13 - Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has announced that the state government will set up a consultative committee to safeguard the rights of indigenous people following the Centre’s proposal to re-introduce the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill.

“The committee will bring together all the community-based organisations, civil societies and students’ unions of the state for consultation on CAB,” Khandu said addressing a huge gathering at the ruling BJP’s ‘Sankalp Yatra’ organised at Yingkiong in Upper Siang district on Saturday, as part of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150th birth anniversary celebrations.

The Chief Minister said “the committee will take inputs from the civil society organisations on adding safeguards to the proposed CAB so that protections given to the tribal people of Arunachal under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation Act of 1873 and Chin Hill Regulations Act, 1896 is not diluted. It will also be responsible for interpreting the various provisions of the CAB and to add clauses for protection of Arunachali people”.

Khandu said Union Home Minister Amit Shah, during the recent meeting of the North-East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) at Guwahati had assured that the CAB will not override any provisions that have for long protected the rights of the tribal people of the North East.

The Chief Minister also informed the state government had earlier requested the Union government that the Bill should be tabled in Parliament after adequately addressing the concerns of the indigenous people of the state.

Speaking on steps taken to boost investment in the state, Khandu announced that an investment summit focused on Arunachal entrepreneurs will be held soon.

He said the objective of the summit will be to encourage Arunachal entrepreneurs to start investing in their own state in newer areas other than construction. The next step, he said, will be directed at entrepreneurs from outside. The state government wishes to attempt a different model of investment that aims at joint investment by local and outside entrepreneurs.

On tourism prospects of Upper Siang, the Chief Minister said Pemakod region was set to attract a huge number of tourists from abroad as well as across the country as it was an important Buddhist pilgrimage site and was blessed by Guru Padmasambhava in the 7th century. He said the Buddhist circuit all over the world attracts huge inflow of tourists. Health Minister Alo Libang and state BJP president and MP Tapir Gao also spoke on the occasion.

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