Aizawl: Newly sworn-in Mizoram chief minister Lalduhoma on Friday said that his government will set up a state-level boundary committee to deal with issues related to the state borders with neighbouring states.
Mizoram shares about 325 km long boundaries with Assam in the north, Manipur in the east and Tripura in the west.
Speaking to reporters after taking oath as the chief minister on Friday, Lalduhoma said that safeguarding the state’s boundary is one of the priorities of his government.
The state government will have to prepare in advance for any event of border dispute, he said.
“Boundary committee will be formed and our leaders will take steps to ensure that all stakeholders are involved in the committee,” he said.
Mizoram has negligible border disputes with Manipur and Tripura.
However, the northeastern state has a decade-old border dispute with Assam, which remains unresolved till today.
Three Mizoram districts- Aizawl, Kolasib and Mamit share about 164 km long boundary with Assam’s Cachar, Karimganj and Hailakandi districts.
The border dispute between the two neighbouring states stemmed from two colonial demarcations in 1875 and 1933.
While Mizoram claimed that 509 square miles of areas of the inner line reserved forest notified in 1875 under the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR) 1873 as its actual boundary, Assam on the other hand, regarded the map prepared by survey of India in 1933 as its constitutional boundary.
Vast areas within the inner line reserved forest now fall under Assam. Similarly, a certain extent of the area as per the 1933 demarcation is now on Mizoram’s side. There is no ground demarcation of boundaries between the two states.
The border dispute turned ugly on July 26, 2021, when police forces of both states exchanged fire leading to the death of six policemen and a civilian from Assam.
More than 60 people from both states were also injured in the violent clash.
Mizoram and Assam have held 3 rounds of ministerial-level talks to resolve the long pending inter-state border dispute since August 2021.
Besides, the two neighbouring states have also held virtual meetings on several occasions.
Mizoram outgoing chief minister Zoramthanga and Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had also met twice in New Delhi in November 2021 and September last year to find an amicable solution to the vexed border dispute.
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