Assam, Mizoram hold border talks, next meeting in October

Aizawl, Aug 9 : High-level delegations of Mizoram and Assam governments on Tuesday held border talks here and expressed hope to amicably resolve the decades-old boundary dispute between the two North-eastern neighbours.

The delegations signed a joint statement that said both the states agreed to promote and maintain peace and prevent any untoward incident along the border.

Deputy Commissioners of the border districts of both states will meet at least once in two months, the statement said.

A violent clash between the police forces of Assam and Mizoram in July last year claimed the lives of six people, following which the two states formed committees to resolve the border dispute.

Both sides on Tuesday also agreed that economic activities, including cultivation and farming, which have been practised by the people on either side of the border, should be allowed to continue regardless of the administrative control exercised by the states.

The Mizoram delegation was headed by Home Minister Lalchamliana while the Assam team was led by Border Protection and Development Minister Atul Bora.

Speaking to reporters after the talks, Bora said that the chief ministers of both the states are sincere and taking positive roles in settling the vexed border dispute.

Lalchamliana said that it will take time to have a lasting solution to the boundary problem.

Both delegations agreed to hold the next round of talks in Assam’s capital Guwahati in October.

To a question, the Assam minister said that formation of a joint inspection team to conduct ground verification of the border areas will be discussed in the next meeting.

He said a chief ministerial-level talk can be expected soon.

Mizoram’s stand on the border issue will also be discussed in the next round of the talks, Lalchamliana said.

Three Mizoram’s districts – Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit – share a 164.6 km long boundary with Assam’s Hailakandi, Karimganj and Cachar districts.

The border dispute between the two states is a long-standing issue, which stemmed from two colonial demarcations in 1875 and 1933.

There is no proper ground demarcation between the two neighbouring states after Mizoram was carved out as a Union Territory from Assam in 1972. (PTI)

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