After dissolution of the
State Assembly on 6 July 2004 following the downsizing of
the Ministry pursuant to the Anti-Defection Act, the Congress
Party won the Arunachal Pradesh State Assembly elections
held in October 2004.
the first time, an estimated 1,497 Chakma and Hajong citizens
exercised the right to franchise in May 2004 parliamentary
general elections and October 2004 assembly elections on
the directions of the Election Commission of India. However,
more than 20,000 Chakma and Hajong eligible voters were
not included into the electoral rolls. More than 10,000
Chakmas and Hajongs migrants have also not been granted
Indian citizenship. About 4,000 Chakmas had submitted their applications
to the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India in
1997 pursuant to the Supreme Court judgement but not a single
application has so far been processed.
Serious human rights violations
against the Chakmas and Hajongs remained the main concern
in Arunachal Pradesh. Following the murder of a local public
leader, Innaolaong Singpho allegedly by some miscreants
in December 2004, the All Arunachal Pradesh Students Union
turned the murder into a communal issue and unleashed fresh atrocities against
the Chakmas and Hajongs. One Hajong was killed, dozens were
injured and 33 Chakma houses were torched. The entry of
the Chakma and Hajong students at Innao Secondary School
in Changlang district was temporarily banned. On 10 December
2004, underground National Liberation Front of Arunachal
(NLFA) headed by K H Tara served quit notice to the Chakmas
and Hajongs to leave Arunachal Pradesh within two months.
Although, NLFA has not been
relatively active, armed opposition groups from neighbouring
Assam and Nagaland reportedly maintained their presence
especially in the Changlang district in the State.
Many innocent persons have been victims of atrocities
perpetrated both by the armed opposition groups from outside
of Arunachal Pradesh and the security forces. On 16 November 2004, the army personnel
posted in Tikhak Putak village under Changlang district
were attacked. Three persons were killed and seven were
injured. The army subsequently launched combing operations. On 13 December 2004, the Assam Rifles
personnel reportedly shot dead one Tana Profulla, a civilian,
while entering a jungle along with three of his friends.