Assam-Mizoram border: the Center imposes the status quo; construction activities interrupted

Aizawl: The Mizoram government has partially halted construction activity along the state’s border with neighboring Assam following a new directive from the Center to maintain the status quo along the interstate border, said on Friday a senior official from the state’s hope department.

The government of Mizoram built roads and bridges to connect political assignment posts and camps in border areas after the July standoff, which left seven people dead and injured dozens.

The senior official said on condition of anonymity that the Home Office (MHA) sent a letter to the Mizoram government on November 6, urging it to maintain the status quo over disputed areas along the interstate border.

Following the Centre’s directive, the state’s interior department sent letters to district administrations urging them to maintain the status quo on disputed areas and to refrain from undertaking construction activities without consent. mutual, he said.

The three districts of Mizoram – Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit – share a 164.6 km long border with the districts of Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj in Assam.

Meanwhile, state interior minister Lalchamliana said the state government will undertake activities in the border area on the Mizoram side, as per requirements.

He said state police would continue to be deployed in border areas to prevent untoward incidents and allay fears among the population.

Kolasib’s deputy commission, Dr H. Lalthlangliana, said construction activities are being carried out over a large part of Mizoram territory because they respect the status quo.

“Part of the construction activities are taking place in some border areas on the Mizoram side. The Mizoram has never built any roads or other structures inside Assam or in contested areas, ”he said.

The border dispute between the two northeastern states is a long-standing problem, which stems from two demarcations during the colonial period.

While Mizoram claimed a 509 square mile expanse of Interior Line Reserved Forest notified in 1875 under the Eastern Bengal Frontier Settlement of 1873 as an actual boundary, Assam declared the 1933 demarcations to be its constitutional boundary. .

The crux of the matter is that several parts of the Interior Line Classified Forest are now under Assam, while many areas of the 1933 demarcations have been occupied by the Mizos for over a century.

Mizoram was part of Assam before it was established as a separate Union territory in 1971.

It achieved statehood in 1987 after a 20-year insurgency movement led by the former Mizo Clandestine National Front (MNF), which is now the ruling party in the state and an ally of the NDA government led by the BJP.

Assam is now a state ruled by the BJP.

The border dispute between the states took a horrific turn on July 26 when police forces from both states exchanged gunfire near the border town of Vairengte along National Route 306, resulting in the deaths of six police officers and a civilian from Assam.

Dozens of people on both sides were also injured in the violent clashes.

The tension eased following a ministerial-level meeting on August 5, which agreed to keep the peace and resolve the border dispute amicably through dialogue.

However, the situation along the Mizoram-Assam border continues to be tense due to sporadic incidents after the August agreement.

Lalthlangliana said the situation is still volatile as the two forces are still encamped in the border areas.

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Sally J. Minick