North-East: Accepting The Idea Of India

WHEN the North-East of India comes up for discussion in a public forum or figures in media coverage, the stock phrases used in conversations or dialogue usually give the impression that the entire region is engulfed in strife and confrontation. I am willing to bet that a majority of stories would be inspired by phrases such as “ethnic tension”, “racial discrimination”, “trouble spot”, “conflict...

‘Foreign Tourists Inflow To NE Has Increased By 27 Percent’

SHILLONG, Oct 14: Foreign tourists’ inflow into Northeastern states has increased by over 27 per cent last year against a national growth of only 5.9 per cent, a top Union Tourism department official said here on Tuesday. “The number of foreign tourists visiting the Northeast region has increased by 27.9 per cent in the past one year,” Union Tourism Ministry Secretary Parvez Dewan told...

Looking South Makes Sense

LOOKING south from the North-east region of India does not in any way imply that we look at the states of South India, one of which is the homeland of Union home minister P Chidambaram. Indeed, going by what was Wikileaked, Chidambaram would just as well have nothing to do with North India, much less a troubled frontier like ours in the North-east, which presumably takes up much of his quality time. In...

Microfinance Program In North-East India

A microfinance customer of Ujjivan Financial Services, a Bangalore-based Microfinance Institution. Image Credit: Microfinance Focus. Microfinance program, such as the SHG-BLP, has been extending credit to poor households using innovative delivery approach like group lending. In spite of being successful, there are still disparities in the program in its level of progress across different parts of the...

Peace Talks— The Roadblocks Ahead

NORTH-EAST India is constantly on a roller coaster. Moments of exuberance are only spasmodic and, for the rest of the time, people slip back to a wretched state of despair followed by endless carping. Peace talks are the new mantra of the region, but dialogue with one group is keenly watched by others who either feel threatened about their futures within that new arrangement or get ideas about a new...

Meghalaya Chief Minister To Complain Against Agatha

Agatha Sangma (File Photo) SHILLONG, Jan 12: Meghalaya Chief Minister Mukul Sangma Wednesday said he would register his complaint with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh against union Minister of State for Rural Development Agatha K. Sangma for trying to disturb the fragile law and order situation in riot-hit areas in the state. He accused her of moving in the disturbed areas against the district administration’s...

1,800 Displaced People Returned Home In Meghalaya

MENDIPATHAR (Meghalaya), Jan 12 : Around 1,800 people, who were displaced following the ethnic clashes in Meghalaya and Assam, have returned home and no reports of fresh violence were reported in the region, an official said Wednesday. In Assam’s Goalpara district, two relief camps were closed after the displaced wanted to go back to their homes, Goalpara District Magistrate P.K. Goswami told...

Ethnic Clashes In North-East Redefine A Border Blurred By Years Of Friendship

Garo refugees in Meghalaya. Image Credit: Indian Express. Halesh Rabha, 56, of Noksarpara in East Garo Hills district of Meghalaya does not want to go back to his ancestral village, which he left a week ago. Neither does Hajan Singh Sangma of Puthimari in Assam. One is a Rabha tribal from Meghalaya, the other a Garo from Assam. And both have been rendered homeless in the ethnic violence that has gripped...

Identity Politics And Social Exclusion in India’s North-East: The Case For Re-Distributive Justice

An Apatani lady of Arunachal Pradesh. Abstract: This paper examines how various brands of identity politics since the colonial days have served to create the basis of exclusion of groups, resulting in various forms of rifts, often envisaged in binary terms: majority-minority; ‘˜sons of the soil’-immigrants; local-outsiders; tribal-non-tribal; hills-plains; inter-tribal; and intra-tribal....

Assam Issues Shoot-At-Sight Order To Quell Ethnic clashes

GUWAHATI, Jan 11: The Union government has sent 10 companies of paramilitary forces to the Assam-Meghalaya border even as the Assam government has issued a shoot-at-sight order to prevent escalation of ethnic violence between the Garos and the Rabhas of the two neighboring States. Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi told journalists here on Monday that the ethnic clashes, which broke out in the Mednipathar...

Indian Diaspora Invited To Invest In North-East

NEW DELHI, Jan 8: The Indian Diaspora was Saturday invited by chief ministers of northeastern states to invest in the region’s infrastructure, especially the healthcare and education sectors. ‘You are the people who can help… There is a lot of scope in education and healthcare sectors for investment. Please help us with money and expertise,’ Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi...

RBI To set Up Branch In Tripura

AGARTALA, Dec. 30: The RBI, the country’s apex banking regulator, will set up a branch office here soon for smooth co-ordination of banks in the public sector and to address other problems, including keeping a watch on illegal functioning of non-banking financial companies (NBFCs). After Tripura, the RBI will set up branches in Nagaland, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh, Tripura...

BOOK REVIEW: Insurgency and Economic Development in North East India

‘Insurgency and Economic Development in North East India‘ is a compendium of 19 well-researched papers on the focus area of insurgency and economic development in North East India and related themes. The papers were presented at a national seminar on the same topic at the Sibsagar College, Joysagar some time back. Contribution of a panel of authorities drawn from the diverse fields of administration,...