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Arunachal

Arunachal: Reintegration of the Misguided Youths in the Mainstream: Need for an Effective Rehabilitation Policy

A Year in Longding District of Arunachal PradeshReintegration of the Misguided Youths in the Mainstream: Need for an Effective Rehabilitation Policy  ( By- Nyatum Doke )-   On 13th June 2022 the Governor of Arunachal Pradesh Brig (Retd) Dr BD Mishra had a meeting with the Wancho Council regarding effective rehabilitation policy for the misguided youths of the district. Arunachal despite having 3 districts under AFSPA has no rehabilitation policy of its own. Last year, in August our Honorable CM Pema Khandu talked about bringing out a comprehensive surrendered policy in Arunachal for those youths who wish to return to the mainstream. In this regard it is pertinent to discuss what could be the best possible way to reintegrate the misguided youths to the vortex of the mainstream developmental process.

I had the opportunity to communicate with some of the misguided youths who have joined the mainstream. On enquiry, it is usually found that the reason for their joining the banned outfits though not exclusively, but is mainly livelihood issues. Then one thing is common with all the surrendered ones that after coming to the mainstream they are not able to get proper livelihood facilities.

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In this regards our Governor has also suggested that they should be “exploring entrepreneurship and ‘Start-Up’ programme; become self-sufficient through pisciculture, horticulture, loin weaving, handicrafts, and other forms of self-employment, and work hard to be able to create jobs for other youth”. To add our CM has said “the government will try to aid the surrendered insurgents with flagship programmes through the policy.” Everything being said, we need to chalk out how?

First of all, the authorities should do a skill and interest mapping- and make a comprehensive list whenever any misguided youth come forwards. It will be helpful in making effective planning to ensure a sustainable livelihood for them. Then, scheme Like ‘Swavalamban’ of Assam can be initiated in the state through which entrepreneurship & skill development are imparted to them in phased manners in collaboration with ArSRLM, Dept of tourism, Dept of Handicraft and Textile, Industries etc.

After successful completion of the training, bank linkage should  beestablished for a sustainable livelihood. We can also think about giving the surrendered militants with special Quota under various subsidy schemes in various departments. Going beyond we can Create SHGs of surrendered militants through NRLM and NULM etc. and provide them with necessary training and provide revolving or startup funds under the same.

In addition to this, fast track courts for the misguided youths who wish to shun the path of violence, establishment of proper rehabilitation camps with good facilities and counselling service in selected locations should also be considered for effectively reintegrating them to the society. This will encourage misguided youths to come forward to join the mainstream.

The govt can also think about granting of some minimum amount as a shock absorber until they could find some sustainable source of livelihood. The Government of India has been implementing a Scheme for Surrender-cum-Rehabilitation of Militants in the North-East. Under this scheme Surrenderees are paid monthly stipend not exceeding Rs. 3,500/- p.m., for a period not more than 36 months  and an  immediate  grant of Rs. 1.5 lakh is kept in a bank in the name of each surrenderee as fixed deposit for a period of 3 years. Implementing this in our state would go a long way and may have positive implications.

Also, Successful models like Singapore’s rehabilitation programme that consists of four components: psychological rehabilitation; religious rehabilitation; social rehabilitation; and community involvement and family support should be looked into and considered.

The concerted efforts of security agencies and district administration led by the govt of AP have been successful in encouraging youths to return to the mainstream- however, the “war is still only half won”. The govt needs to come up with a ‘comprehensive, effective and soft surrender policy and rehabilitation plan’ for the state to ensure socio-economic rehabilitation and sustainable livelihood to the misguided youth so that we can arrest the recidivism and to win the war.

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