Arunachal Pradesh, situated strategically in the border areas of the northeastern region of India, occupies 83, 743 sq. Kms and has a population of 1.3 million (2011 Census). It is the largest state in the region, yet with the thinnest density of population of only 17 persons/sq. Kms.
The region, rich in its diversity of communities is also abounding in natural resources, especially water and forests and has an equal vibrant flora and fauna. The state is socially, culturally, and politically very complex and while it contains great environmental and natural resource diversity, it also has accompanying challenges.
With adoption of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the changing aspirations of what constitutes the idea of development, a time has come perhaps to revisit the developmental agenda of the state and draw up a sustainable and holistic policy paradigm.
There is an urgent need for the road map for development of the tribal communities in the state to be relooked into. Though there have been many policies for the welfare of the tribal population, a concern also has emerged regarding the proper implementation of these policies.
Issues of tribal ownership of land, forest and other natural resources, while making use of the resources by the tribals themselves, have often been at cross purpose with the demands of planning as envisaged by various governmental institutions.