Thungon Committee


In terms of indigenous rights and development, the Thungon Committee has played a crucial role in Indian history. This group, which was established in the early 1970s, was crucial in addressing the problems and concerns faced by India’s indigenous people. It detailed narrative sheds light on the incredible journey of the Thungon Committee by examining its goals, history, accomplishments, and legacy.

In 1988, a sub-committee of the Consultative Committee of Parliament was constituted under the chairmanship of P.K. Thungon to examine the political and administrative structure in the district for the purpose of district planning. This committee suggested for the strengthening of the Panchayati Raj system. It made the following recommendations:

  1. The Panchayati Raj bodies should be recognized under the constitution.
  2. Panchayati Raj is a three-tiered structure with panchayats at the village, block, and district levels.
  3. The Panchayati Raj system’s center of gravity ought to be the Zilla Parishad. It ought to serve as the district’s planning and development organization.
  4. The Panchayati Raj bodies should have a fixed tenure of five years.
  5. The maximum period of super session of a body should be six months.
  6. At the state level, a planning and coordination committee should be established, with the planning minister serving as its head. Its members ought to be the Zilla Parishad presidents.
  7. There should be a thorough list of topics for Panchayati Raj that is included in the Constitution.
  8. The population should be used as the basis for seat reservations in all three categories. Women should be given reservations as well.
  9. Every state has to establish a state finance commission. It would specify the requirements and rules for the transfer of funds to Panchayati Raj organisations.
  10. The Zilla Parishad’s main executive officer ought to be the district collector.

The Origins of the Thungon Committee, Part I

1. Setting the Scene

  • India was going through a lot of political and social transformation during the beginning of the 1970s. The indigenous or tribal people, often known as Adivasis, were confronted with particular and urgent problems as the country struggled with the difficulties of growth and modernization. These communities, which are dispersed throughout several Indian states, had historically been neglected and had no access to resources, facilities, or basic services.

2. Taro Sindhe’s Pioneering Leadership

  • The formation of the Thungon Committee occurred in this setting. Arunachal Pradesh’s Member of Parliament and visionary leader Taro Sindhe Thungon was in charge of the committee. Taro Sindhe Thungon had a strong commitment to addressing the issues and advancing the development of indigenous communities. His leadership had a key role in the committee’s creation.

The Thungon Committee’s goals

1. Promoting Native American Empowerment

  • The Thungon Committee’s main goal was to support the empowerment of Indian indigenous groups. Their lives were affected in a variety of ways by this empowerment, including their access to healthcare, economic prospects, and political representation.

2. Advocacy for Change in Policy

  • The committee’s advocacy of legislative changes that would assist indigenous populations was a key goal. In particular, they fought to have their land rights safeguarded, their culture and customs preserved, and exploitation and prejudice ended.

3. Increasing Native American Identity

  • The Thungon Committee also sought to enhance indigenous tribes’ sense of self and to encourage pride in their cultural heritage. This was considered crucial for their general growth and well-being.

The Thungon Committee’s accomplishments

1. Land Use and Forestry Protection

  • The Thungon Committee’s campaign for the defense of indigenous groups’ land rights and forest preservation is one of its major accomplishments. The committee was crucial in emphasizing the value of protecting these tribes’ ancestral lands and resources.

2. Education and Professional Growth

  • To increase the literacy and employability of indigenous youth, the committee launched a number of educational and skill-development programs. Many people’s lives and communities’ lives were affected in a significant way by this.

3. Public health and healthcare initiatives

  • The Thungon Committee also sought to upgrade the native communities’ medical facilities. It promoted easier access to medical services and started initiatives for public health to combat common ailments.

4. Political Representation

  • Promoting political participation for indigenous people was made possible in large part by Taro Sindhe Thungon and the committee. As a result of their work, more indigenous voices are now represented in different legislative bodies, ensuring that their issues are addressed at the highest levels of government.

5. Promoting and Preserving Cultural Diversity

  • The group actively encouraged indigenous tribes to promote and preserve their cultures. This included providing funds for festivals, cultural events, and campaigns to preserve indigenous languages and customs.

Obstacles and Disputations

1. The Opposition Parties

  • The Thungon Committee encountered political resistance even though it had strong backing from indigenous groups. Political disagreements and problems resulted from some political organizations and individuals being reluctant to support the committee’s progressive agenda.

2. Resource Restrictions

  • The committee frequently struggled with a lack of resources, which made it difficult for it to successfully implement all of the programs and initiatives it had suggested. Its life was continually hampered by this restriction.

3. Juggling Growth and Preservation

  • For the committee, maintaining a balance between the advancement of development and the preservation of indigenous culture and customs was a continual problem. Planning and discussion were necessary to achieve the ideal balance between these two goals.

The Thungon Committee’s legacy

1. Developing Indigenous Rights Conversation

  • The Thungon Committee was crucial in establishing the Indian indigenous rights debate. Its advocacy work helped raise awareness of the special difficulties faced by indigenous populations and the requirement for safeguards.

2. Strengthening Native American Communities

  • The committee empowered several indigenous people and communities via its numerous programs and activities. Numerous people took advantage of chances in education, healthcare, and the economy that they may not have otherwise had.

3. Changes to Policy

  • The lobbying work of the committee resulted in significant policy changes that benefited indigenous populations. Laws were passed as part of these changes to guarantee political representation, safeguard land rights, and encourage cultural preservation.

4. Motivation for Upcoming Movements

  • Future Indian indigenous rights and development groups and organizations continue to draw inspiration from the Thungon Committee. Its legacy is still present in the efforts of innumerable people and organizations who want to change the world.

The Thungon Committee, which was established in the early 1970s, is a testament to steadfast activism on behalf of Indian indigenous groups. The committee, headed by the inspirational Taro Sindhe Thungon, labored assiduously to strengthen these communities, defend their rights, and advance their development. Despite encountering many obstacles, the committee made tremendous progress and left a lasting impression that is still felt today in India when discussing indigenous rights and development. The Thungon Committee continues to be a bright example of what can be achieved when people and organizations band together to support the interests of underrepresented populations as the country advances.


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