A joint team of central officials and representatives from the Manipur government and political parties visited Moreh on Saturday to make an assessment of the construction of the border fence — reportedly on the disputed land. Officials of the Union government were led by S.K. Mishra, joint secretary of the Ministry of Home Affairs. Naveen Singh, Joint Secretary of Ministry of Border Management, was also a part of the team.
Earlier, Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde had ordered the suspension of the border fence’s construction following complaints from the representatives of the 13 political parties in Manipur. The growing demand is that the construction of the fence should be suspended till an agreement is reached with the Myanmarese government.
Some political parties and NGOs have been saying that since the fence is being constructed deep inside Manipur's land, as many as 18 villages will be affected. One village, Choro Khunnou in Ukhrul district shall go entirely to Myanmar. The Border Roads Organisation has been undertaking the construction works under the supervision of Assam Rifles — which is manning the 396-km-long border with Myanmar.
The representatives of the political parties were led by Gaikhangam Gangmei, the Deputy Chief Minister. The representatives returned from Delhi on Friday for a two day visit after meeting Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Mr. Shinde.
Reports said that large portions of Hollenphai village in Manipur — located just 2 km away from the police station at Moreh — had been encroached. The Myanmarese army had constructed a wooden fence in those parts of the village and was not allowing the villagers to cross it.
Some Myanmar activists had tried to submit a memorandum to the visiting officials on the land dispute. However, the officials declined to accept it.