Assam’s border dispute with Arunachal at 1,200 places: CM

Guwahati :-Amid border disputes with Mizoram, Meghalaya and Nagaland, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma told the Assembly on Friday that the state’s boundary disputes with Arunachal Pradesh are at 1,200 places.

The Chief Minister said that the Assam government has been holding informal talks on the border issue with the Arunachal Pradesh government.

“Assam has 12 areas of border disputes with Meghalaya, but the disagreement with Arunachal is at 1,200 places,” he said.

“There was clear demarcation of boundary when the states of Uttarakhand and Jharkhand were created. However, when Mizoram, Arunachal and Nagaland were curved out, the matter was left to certain conditions and the uncertainty remained, causing the disputes,” he added.

Sarma said that Assam’s boundary dispute cases with Nagaland and Arunachal Pradesh are lying in the Supreme Court and any forward movement on these issues without the direction of the apex court would be unwise.

Referring to the historical perspective of the Mizoram boundary with Assam, the Chief Minister said that in 1870, the British administration had given the forest (now a reserve forest) to the Lushai Hills (present day Mizoram).

“The forest areas were bifurcated in 1932 with one portion going to Assam and the other to Mizoram. When Mizoram was given a Union Territory status in 1972, it was decided that the 1932 boundary will be the inter-state border.

“During the signing of the Mizo peace accord in 1986, that very boundary was agreed to be maintained as Mizoram’s boundary. Based on this boundary, Mizoram created a state in 1987,” he stated.

The worst-ever violence along the Assam-Mizoram border on July 26 left six Assam Police personnel dead and around 100 civilians and security personnel of the two neighbouring states injured.

The fierce border troubles between Assam and Mizoram subsided only on August 8 after the withdrawal of the ‘economic blockade’ on National Highway 306, ensuring supply of essential goods, transport fuel and vital medicines to the mountainous border state.

The Assam Chief Minister had also discussed with his Arunachal Pradesh counterpart Pema Khandu about an out of the court settlement of the boundary disputes.