Sanjay Mishra, Darbhanga
The rumpus in politico-social life of mainstream India, usually, leaves little scope for anyone to ponder over North-East. Most of the time, the area is remembered as one of the sore spots of India. It is true this region is still un-free from the shackles of insurgency. But in the midst of it all, a ray of hope is emanating from Arunachal Pradesh, the 24th state of India. The state stands out alone in the cascade often referred to as the seven sisters.
Very few Indians have the inkling that Arunachal Pradesh is rapidly moving on the path of progress. The state is soon going to replace Chhatisgarh as the power hub of India. The credit for this changed scenario of peace and progress is given to Dorjee Khandu, the chief minister of Arunachal Pradesh. So far, the missing Pawan Hans chopper carrying Dorjee, is untraceable. And it has sent ripples throughout the country. Arunachali’s are shell-shocked.
Arunachal Pradesh is surrounded by borders with China, Bhutan and Tibet. It makes the state highly sensitive. Repeated Chinese claim over major portions of Arunachal although teases Indian policy makers, common people in the state have remained composed. They have tried hard to ward off the bitter memories of 1962 war when they were caught in one of the main theatres of Chinese invasion. Improved infra-structural facilities in Chinese territory across the border, at times, brew in anguish in some pockets in bordering areas, but common Arunachalis repose faith in the intentions of Dorjee. The ‘jan seva’ doctrine initiated by Dorjee and his emphasis on all-round progress of the state as ‘dharma’ are curiously looked upon by them.
A patriotic person at the core, Dorjee Khandu, started his career in defense services. After seven years of service he switched over to social work. In the mean-time, the 21st century vision of Rajiv Gandhi allured him towards politics. He cherished to make Arunachal at par with the mainstream India.
Dorjee government has embarked upon an era of developmental activities. Welfare schemes have been launched on a large scale. On the front of human development index, indicators show sharp improvement. Today, big investors see this state as a land of happening. Glowing faces in traditional attire, tell all about the hope enthused. The simple and pious life of Dorjee has helped in endearing people. Political analysts in Arunachal are habitual in dubbing him as common man’s Chief-Minister rather than a congress CM.
Dorjee Khandu invited volley of allegations in 2006, when he participated in the National Day Celebrations of China. He then said that his act was intended to sooth the acrimony across the border. He further made his famous remark that ‘the patriotism of Arunachalis was as deep as Indian ocean and as high as the Himalayas’. Dorjee’s intense involvement in shaping the destiny of Arunachal Pradesh has set high standards in governance, for the governments ruling in sister states.
Sanjay mishra is in the editorial board of a forth-coming book based on Arunachal being authored by amit anand, a delhi based journalist.