Arunachalees symbol of community living

Traditional paddy crusher

* Why not GoAP take a cue to tap hydropower?

Beyond the Horizon

By Pradeep Kumar

The tribal Arunachalee society is a true mirror of community life as the indigenous people share sorrow and happiness together without leaving to be an individual affair besides jointly work for their daily chores.

This had drawn the attention of blogger Ariel Sophia Bardi (Washington), a journalist & consultant with  a PhD,  who recently had said: “People of Arunachal Pradesh lead a unique community life which they sustained while trying to preserve their rich cultural heritage. America has lot to learn from Arunachal, particularly the community life”.

Arunacahlees always reflect unbelievable community spirit. Once mobilized any given target could be achieved much below the expected cost. Massive fire incident is a recurrent phenomenon which reduces numerous tribal houses to ashes in Apatani Plateau Ziro very often. But the community stands united and works round the clock to reconstruct the houses within an unbelievable short span of time which was first lauded by former Lt. governor RN Haldipur in 80’s. After learning that one of the villages in Ziro was gutted to ashes, he had desired to visit Ziro, but IAF could deploy a chopper after few days. On landing at Ziro, when he wanted to visit the village, then DC took him very hesitantly. Surprised at seeing new houses standing tall, he looked at the DC, who told about the community spirit of the Apatanis. “After the mishap, the males worked day and night while women make foods to feed them for which all destroyed houses were built fast,” the DC had replied.

Haldipur had termed this community spirit unparallel and worth emulating, which the Apatanis have maintained and that has stood them in good stead in their life.

Apatanis, mostly inhibiting the Apatani Plateau, has carved a niche for themselves in every walk of life by dint of sincerity, hard work, perseverance and their industrious nature to receive accolades from all quarters.

Moreover, Arunachalee community reflects their sense of duty and extends their helping hands when landslides snaps connectivity during natural calamities to restore link, not seen in the mainland India.

Wanchos, the inhabitants of Longding district, bordering Myanmar, Nagaland and Assam, live  peaceful  in the lap of nature while leading community life.  The traditional wooden paddy crusher, locally called tham (base) and mann (handle), which is used by a group of women simultaneously is a living example of their community life.

It is worth mentioning here that former Lohit and Anjaw DC P S Lokhande using the community spirit of the locals had turned odds into advantages during his tenure. Believing the common adage — It is not machines but the men behind the machines who matter — the young IAS officer had overcome all hurdles of remoteness, communication hazards, fund paucity and other difficulties common throughout the state. He had succeeded is motivating the locals who had became willing partners of development.

Kaho, a non descriptive village perched on a hill top in an inaccessible area along the Indo-China-Myanmar border tri-junction in Anjaw district, boasts of 24-hour power supply from a micro hydel project since 2008, a privilege never seen in most developed part of our country, including the Capital Complex. The village could be reached through a day-long trekking from Kibithoo for want of road. Thus,  all heavy materials and equipments were transported manually by the local villagers and the project, operated by the villagers supply power to the defence forces. Hydropower development department SE R K Joshi had scripted the Kaho success story by sheer determination and will power to prove—Where there is a will, there is a way.

Lokhande, with his trusted lieutenant ADC R K Sharma (present Namsai DC) had launched massive awareness video-cum-demonstrative programme on chodo kalki baaten, aaya hai Naya Savera which  aimed at inculcating the habit of consuming safe drinking water and sanitation practices for a healthy life. The mass appeal had convinced the masses and benefited them immensely with Naya Savera dawning in both land-locked districts.

Kaho micro project

If inaccessible Kaho village could be a glittering example in tapping hydropower with community spirit, the GoAP endeavoring to tap state’s huge 58,000 MW potential should take a cue from community spirit to not only make the state power surplus, offer 24-hour power supply to Capital Complex and turn into reality the common belief “Arunachal Pradesh is future power house of India”?

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