At a time when thousands of volunteers are battling an inferno in the hills of Uttarakhand and Himachal Pradesh to save forests, the peaceful city of Tawang situated in Arunachal Pradesh might be looking at trouble as two people, including a Buddhist monk were killed in police firing.

The gross high-handedness of the police against a crowd of around 200 protesting outside Tawang police station is just one of the issues at hand. The protesters were calling for the release of Lama Lobsang Gyatso of the Save Mon Region Federation (SMRF), who was arrested on April 28, The Times Of India reported.

  • The SMRF has been leading a movement against several hydroelectric dams which are coming up in the region, since these power projects can have adverse effects on the delicate ecosystem of the Eastern Himalayas.
  • The dams are being built after the Arunachal Pradesh government signed MoUs with several firms for constructing close to 100 hydel power projects in the state, out of which 13 will be set up in Tawang alone, The Indian Express reported.

Arunachal Pradesh accounts for 50,328 MW out of a potential hydro-power capacity of 1,48,701 MW in India, and the region is also under Beijing's watch, since China stakes claim to the entire state.