Draw a map of india on paper. Now carefully cut it out making sure every coast & border is neatly cut. Hold it up from the top. See how the NE bit hangs dangerously almost sagging & cut off from the main body of the rest of the map! That’s probably closest to how this region feels – hanging loosely & about to be cut off any moment! The narrowest bit struggles desperately to keep it together. On scale that bit is less than 25kms at it’s narrowest. I sometimes wonder if it hadn’t been for the oil & tea, would the erstwhile Indian government have included it in it’s territories?
Interestingly enough this region which was once mostly rainforest with a few scatterings of permanent settlement is struggling to maintain it’s identity whilst also trying to take unto itself the challenges of the ever changing economics & technologies of the globe. Perhaps its own past is also what is responsible for it’s slow growth. As a tribal community much of the population is coming out of it’s traditional beliefs & ideologies. It’s not a very recent past when there were many tribes that were warring with each other to gather all the resources they needed to survive. That need has been diminished as goods are brought in from the heartlands by road, rail & air. Of course that ideology still prevents quite a few parts from receiving resources easily with roadblocks, raids etc coming in the way! The ahoms fight the bodos & meiteis with nagas etc etc
We only seem to make matters worse for ourselves with all the bloodshed & violence. Instead of blaming the central government, we should take matters in our own hands! If for just a year all the insurgents give up arms & focus on creating socio-economic resources, one can only imagine what amazing things can happen!
We are still at war with each other when we should be actually coexisting which is far more beneficial economically! Imagine if there was smooth movement of goods & services to all parts of the NE.. We’d have fantastic tourist destinations, crazy colourful traditional & music festivals! There’d be rail & road development & india too could boast of world class highways on the mountains.. We could have excellent schools & colleges thanks to the wealth of knowledge that lies dormant & waiting to be put to use! And we’d have world class health centres that’d make the region ideal for medical tourism! & we’d bring forth sportspeople who’d break new world records in every international venue!!!
My thoughts are very utopian perhaps but the sheer thought of these possibilities makes my heart soar for I can see the wealth of amazing things that can happen. I hope and pray that this vision gets shared amongst my country folk too.