Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Inner Line Permit - Does Arunachal need it?

This is the better half of the question that traverses down the abyss of insurmountable reasons to understand Arunachal vis-a-vis explore the same. This interesting short write-up caught up my eyes, and not to forget the numerous discussions or arguments as one might say - on the need for ILP - I had been part to.

“Arunachal Pradesh…exotically yours”

Sign in Miao, Arunachal Pradesh, February 2008: Nicholas Farrelly

Writing slogans for a tourism campaign is not, I imagine, ever an easy task. In Arunachal Pradesh the government has long used “Arunachal Pradesh: Gateway to Serenity” as its core message. Apparently there is a controversial history behind it.

Slogans aside - for better or for worse the tourist industry has never really taken off in the state. Of course, travel to all parts of Arunachal Pradesh is still subject to relatively strict permit regulations that are designed to control the movement of all non-Arunachalis. This means that many casual visitors, particularly domestic tourists, are discouraged from jumping through the necessary bureaucratic hoops. From time-to-time, one does hear murmurs that the permit system will be abolished in the medium-term.

It is an issue on which there will probably remain starkly divided feelings for years to come.

-- by Nicholas Farrelly

The bone of contention is undoubtedly the ILP( Inner Line Permit) which has a significant part of our Historians framing their own sets of theory about the necessity and paucity of what the real situation demands. Mr. Nicholas, certainly won't be the loner with such a feeling on ILP and the relative significance it has, which makes it a relative phenomenon of the time constraints - just like any other tangibles that goes obsolete gradually.

However, this argument would have mixed responses from Arunachali people who are apprehensive about the detrimental aspects of volume of unregulated inflow of people. Which, subsequently would aggravate the worsening condition prevalent in Arunachal.
I am made to believe that, Arunachal is a beautiful place. This becomes the most positive comment and innocuous remarks; I get about Arunachal, from people that I meet and upon knowing that I hail from Arunachal Pradesh. As for the Capitalist bent of thoughts that I keep; these remarks seldom pacifies me, about my concern for my State. Ya, you heard it right – a capitalist bent with some socialist curves. Call it a negatively skewed view of Arunachal or whatsoever – But, I want to put forth that, the so called christened virginal beauty of Arunachal seems to correlate with the deprivations of developments that we have faced since decades.
Always been the Beauty – and so shall we for eternity !
The one liner seems to suffice the reality and rationality of being always connoted with the word “ Beauty “ and idea of materializing it.
It would take a lot to understand or at least realize the upper strata of frustrations that we can actually keep for our self - that we remain a beautiful state only for the reason that we have always been aloof of Developmental aspects, be it in terms of infrastructure, education wise, or economically.
Arunachal - the unexplored paradise ?
I don’t get the essence of the un-exploratory mode that we are still subjugated with; “post - our realization” that Tourism could do a hell lot for the imminent facelift our state requires – in fact the only viable option available to us at the moment.
OK – the topic is getting drifted. But, all I would say is we need to think why we remain the same old – unexplored paradise, ever since Mr.X coined it for the first time.
The objectives of Inner Line Permit can be better understood by taking two stand points – Pre-independence and Post-independence objectives.

Pre-Independence objectives:
• Keep the semi-savage tribes at bay from people from plains – security concerns etc. Any infringement with this Law and subsequent consequences (of any nature) would be strictly out of GOI jurisprudence.
• Commercial activities were to be strictly monitored and hence could be carried out only on the basis of a Pass.
Implication of such a regulation certainly was to lessen the burden and the troubles Indian Government could or would like to keep any.
So the frameworks of these laws had more to do with British attitudes toward mainland Indians ( section of people worth ruling ) and the Tribal Indians ( people unworthy of taking account of or even notice).
The Indian govt. had to keep up with the some of the laws ( in fact most of the laws ) that British people had framed for India. But, the rationality and implication of the same had to change accordingly.
The Britishers had formulated this Permit system to keep mainland Indians safe from the semi-savage tribes, but post-independence rhetoric of the same got changed. Now, the ILP law stood for protection of Tribal people from seemingly and understandably advanced mainland people.
This could have showered respites to a Tribal person – if he had any deep thought about how GOI is so much concerned about the ethos of Democracy, and the need to keep everyone equal. But, the preponderance nature of further depriving the Tribal was far from over.
With such a Law at hand, Arunachal obviously had no other option but to “remain unexplored”. So, the Permit system law that was framed in 1873 had to undergo massive face-liftings, taking care of the sensitivities involved with this issue. It was imperative on the part of the GOI to come up with better definition and reasons to back up, such a law, to accrue the fact that Arunachal Pradesh was an important factor from strategic standpoint. It was in 1952, at the opening session of ST and Scheduled areas conference in New Delhi, Pt.Jawaharlal Nehru delivered his speech, mostly based on his thoughts about upliftment of the backward sections of the society and develop them. But, strictly by avoiding imposing anything on them ( tribals).
So, the post objectives had to change and they were:
1. Encourage try people in every manner; develop their traditional arts and cultures, without imposing any regulations on them.
2. Protection of Tribal rights in land and forests matter.
3. Avoidance of allowing too many non-arunachalees into tribal territory.
4. Sense of co-operation to inculcated among Tribal and plain people.
5. To judge results not by statistics or the amount of money spent, but by the quality of human character that is evolved.

Beautiful objectives I would rather say, but the lately evolved natural tendency of human beings to incline with the definition of WANTS and the means to satisfy the same, hardly gets a touch.


Michael Wong 38 4:14 PM  

Hi Rome, thanks for replying. I linked to both of your blogs and as for the technorati fav train, it's an attempt to increase fans on technorati. basically you just copy the list, add yourself to the end of the list, post it on your blog, favorite everyone on technoratio, then leave me a comment with your post. then i update you on the masterlist so everyone can favorite you as well. if there's anything that isn't clear, gimme another shout and i'll walk you through it, cheers, michael

wiian 9:24 PM  

changed. happy blogging :)

prithwi 6:29 PM  

delighted to see that you included a link of your blog (even if wasn't the perfectly correct url!;-))in your posting on tom peter's article in fastcompany (! now that is good personal branding! keep the good work on....the results will come!!

Rome Mele 11:47 AM  

Thanks for the encouraging words sir.



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