ITANAGAR, June 02: The All Arunachal Pradesh Students’ Union (AAPSU) on Friday said it has strong reasons to oppose and question the nature of demand for Patkai Autonomous District Council (PADC), comprising Tirap, Changlang and Longding districts, under Article 371(A) of the Constitution.
Article 371(A), the students’ body said, is a special provision granted to Nagaland as a partial fulfillment of the 1960 agreement that created the state in 1963.
“The committee for PADC demanded the council under Article 371(A) to include clause (a) and sub-clause (i), (ii), (iii) and (iv) which clearly states that (i) religious or social practices of the Nagas (ii) Naga customary law and procedure (iii) administration of civil and criminal justice involving decisions according to Naga customary law and (iv) ownership and transfer of land and its resources, shall apply to the state of Nagaland unless the Legislative Assembly of Nagaland by a resolution so decides,” AAPSU said.
The union said that the demand for PADC on the lines of Nagaland Statehood Bill “is something to ponder upon and cannot be just wished away being”. The development is contradictory and someway, PADC is misguiding the people in demanding the district council under Article 371(A) which is solely for state of Nagaland, thereby undermining the spirit of one Arunachal Pradesh, the union added.
“The whole gamut of things smack of political instigation and hidden agenda by certain vested interest and AAPSU in its full wisdom does not hold any grudge towards the genuine demand for autonomous district council as envisioned by people of Tirap, Changlang and Longding under the Sixth Schedule without aligning with the statehood bill of another state,” AAPSU said.
The union, it added, will oppose the PADC committee tooth and nail as long as it attunes it to Article 371(A).