Assam team in border village to verify allegations of Mizoram encroachment

Tension flared between Assam and Mizoram along the interstate border on October 29 last year (File)

Hailakandi (Assam):

The Assam government on Wednesday sent an official team to a remote village in Hailakandi district, along its border with Mizoram, to verify claims that people from the neighboring state have encroached on land in Assam. and felled trees for jhum cultivation, a senior official said.

Hailakandi Police Superintendent Gaurav Upadhyay told PTI that a joint team from the civil administration, police and forest department had been dispatched to verify allegations of encroachment at Gutguti in the area of ​​the Ramnathpur police station.

“On Tuesday, we received reports from some residents of alleged encroachments in a very remote location. To verify their claims, a team was dispatched to the site during the day,” he said.

Mr Upadhyay said the team has not yet returned to the district headquarters and full details related to the alleged encroachment will only be known after receiving their report.

“At this time, we cannot say whether this is an encroachment or whether they were clearing forests for jhum cultivation on the side of Mizoram itself. We will take action as per our team’s report. when they arrive from the place,” he added.

Local sources said more than 100 trees have already been cut down by Mizoram residents to create a road to reach a jhum cultivation spot in a forested area of ​​Gallacherra on the Assam side in the past few days. .

Tension rose between Assam and Mizoram along the interstate border in Hailakandi district on October 29 last year following a ‘low intensity explosion’ near the outpost of Baicherra of Assam Police and the arrest of a member of Mizoram Police for his alleged involvement in the incident.

At least six Assam police and one civilian were killed and more than 50 people injured as the escalating border dispute between the two northeastern states erupted into a bloody conflict on July 26. ‘last year.

Again on August 17, unidentified people from Mizoram opened fire on workers engaged in the construction of a road in the district of Hailakandi, which was retaliated by the Assam police.

On August 20, some Mizoram workers were found constructing a bridge at Kachurthal in the Ramnathpur police station area. About 40 to 50 Mizoram security personnel reached the bridge site when Assam police objected to the construction.

Two days later, in order to assert Assam’s position and demand that Mizoram forces withdraw to the Assam side of the bridge, a group of about 200 Assam police and commandos under the leadership of Upadhyay had reached Kachurthal and the matter was settled without any problem. violent face to face.

On November 24, a team of senior officials including Hailakandi DC and SP traveled to a forest reserve near the remote village of Haticherra, along the Assam-Mizoram border, to inspect a site where a road would have was built on the Assam side by Mizoram.

On August 22 last year, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) issued opinions to the Centre, Assam and Mizoram over the deadly border clash between the two northern states. is in July, stating that a “serious violation of human rights” had taken place.

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

The long-running dispute has its roots in an 1875 notification issued during British rule that differentiates Lushai Hills from the plains of Cachar, and another from 1933 that delineates a boundary between Lushai Hills and Manipur.

Mizoram insists that the interstate boundary be demarcated on the basis of the notification of 1875, a corollary to the Eastern Bengal Frontier Regulation (BEFR) Act 1873.

Mizoram leaders, however, objected to the 1933 demarcation notification, saying the Mizo company had not been consulted, while Assam wants the notification to be enforced.

(Except for the title, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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