Indigenous Nomenclature Of Various Tribes In Arunachal To Be Added To ‘ST’ List, CM Pema Khandu Thanks PM

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Posted in Arunachal Pradesh

Tanu Bulo, Itanagar, Arunachal Pradesh

A historic decision taken by the Union Cabinet is likely to bring cheer to many indigenous communities (tribes) of Arunachal Pradesh that were either wrongly named or were clubbed together with others vaguely, taking away their unique identity. The union cabinet has approved the modified list of Arunachal Pradesh Scheduled tribes list through a constitutional amendment to The Constitution (Scheduled Tribe) order, 1950.

Arunachal CM Pema Khandu thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the correction of these historic errors which was causing an identity crisis for many of the indigenous communities of the state.

Now the Khampti tribe will be known as Tai Khamti, three other tribes (Mishmi, Idu, Taraon) will now be expanded to include Mishmi-Kaman (Miju Mishmi), Idu (Mishmi), and Taraon (Digaru Mishmi). 4 other distinct tribes will be named- Monpa, Memba, Sartang, and Sajolong (Miji) who were earlier collectively named as Momba.

Also, the Tangsa, Nocte, Tutsa, Wancho tribes who were earlier vaguely referred to as “any Naga tribes” have been corrected. Henceforth they will be known by their distinct tribes’ names. These communities who are residing in Tirap, Changlang, and Longding districts are not only facing identity crises but encountering inconvenience in official work as they were not recognized by the Centre as separate entities.

As per Article 342 of the Indian Constitution, the President specifies tribes or tribal communities or parts of or groups within tribes or tribal communities which are to be deemed for the purposes of the constitution to be Scheduled Tribes in relation to the various states and union territories. The constitution doesn’t explicitly prescribe any principles or policy for drawing up lists of STs however it does indicate that extreme social, educational, and economic backwardness would qualify a caste or tribe to be included in these lists.

According to the norms, a State govt has to send a proposal to the tribal ministry for inclusion, exclusion, or any other amendments to the existing names of tribes in the ST list. The ministry then sends the proposal to the Registrar General of India (RGI) for further examination. If approved by RGI, a proposal is sent to the National Commission of Scheduled Tribe (NCST). The tribal affairs ministry then prepares a constitutional amendment bill to incorporate changes to the ST list and takes it to parliament following the approval of the cabinet.

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