Other States

Assam, Mizoram agree on border patrol by neutral forces

Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel standing guard at the national highway in Lailapur area near Assam-Mizoram border on August 1, 2021, after the two States agreed to resolve their differences peacefully.  

The Assam government on Thursday revoked its advisory against travel to Mizoram after the two States agreed to let neutral forces deployed by the Centre take control of the disputed stretches of the inter-State border for maintaining peace.

Trouble between the two States since October 2020 snowballed into a major conflict on July 26 with six Assam policemen and a civilian gunned down allegedly by the Mizoram police and armed civilians.

The two States also decided not to send their respective police and forest forces “for patrolling, domination, enforcement or for fresh deployment to any of the areas where confrontation and conflict has taken place between the police forces of the two States during recent times”.

The decision was taken at a meeting between Ministers and officials of the two States in Aizawl.

While Assam was represented by Border Protection and Development Minister Atul Bora, Urban Development Minister Ashok Singhal and Border Protection and Development Commissioner-Secretary G.D. Tripathi, Mizoram was represented by Home Minister Lalchamliana, Rural Development Minister Lalruatkima and Home Secretary Vanlalngaihsaka.

“The decision will apply to all disputed stretches of the Assam-Mizoram border in Hailakandi and Karimganj districts besides Cachar district [where the July 26 incident happened],” Mr Bora said after the meeting.

The representatives of the Mizoram government conveyed their condolences to the survivors of those killed on July 26.

The outcome of the meeting, however, had little impact on the economic blockade imposed on the roads leading to Mizoram by locals in southern Assam’s Barak Valley. “We have been in touch with local groups continuously for removing the blockades,” Cachar’s SP Ramandeep Kaur said.

But officials hoped the efforts at mending fences would help resume transport to and from Mizoram. The Assam government had after the violent border skirmish last month advised its residents to avoid travelling to Mizoram besides asking the border residents to “exercise utmost caution”.

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Printable version | Sep 19, 2021 4:29:54 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/assam-mizoram-agree-on-border-patrol-by-neutral-forces/article35743167.ece

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