Efforts on to resolve border dispute with Assam: Mizoram Home Minister Lalchamliana

By PTI

AIZAWL: The Mizoram government has devised strategies and making massive efforts to resolve the long-standing border dispute with neighbouring Assam, state Home Minister Lalchamliana told the assembly on Thursday.

The state government had in 2018 constituted a core committee to study and assess the state boundary.

It was re-constituted with chief secretary Lalnunmawia Chuaunog as the chairman in 2019, he said.

“The core committee is currently doing research and analysis on the state border by collecting topo-sheets and important documents related to the state boundary with Assam,” Lalchamliana said, replying to a query from Congress Legislature Party leader Zodintluanga Ralte.

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The state government has already appointed a nodal officer on the border issue and submitted a report to the Centre as per the Union Ministry of Home Affairs instruction, he said.

According to the home minister, the state government has also constituted a team to compile important documents, supportive of Mizoram’s stand on the border issue and it will be tabled before experts from Manohar Parrikar Institute of Defence Studies when they visit the state.

A boundary committee involving all political parties and NGOs, headed by Deputy Chief Minister Tawnluia, has also been formed recently to deal with the issue, Lalchamliana said.

On Wednesday, the home minister claimed in the assembly that Assam has encroached and is currently occupying a vast area of lands belonging to at least 20 farmers from Kolasib district.

These lands are located in Aitlang area, bordering Assam’s Hailakandi district, and Buarchep and Phainuam areas on the border with Assam’s Cachar district, the home minister had said.

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“There is no report of any encroachment from the neighbouring state at Thinghlun in western Mizoram’s Mamit district, which borders Assam’s Karimganj district,” Lalchamliana was quoted as saying by assembly officials.

Mizoram’s three districts — Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit share a 164.6 km long inter-state border with Assam’s Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj districts.

Tension escalated on July 26 when police forces of both states exchanged fire, leaving at least six police personnel and a civilian from Assam dead and more than 60 people injured.

The boundary dispute between the two Northeastern states is a long-standing issue and several attempts to resolve it since 1994 have yielded little result.