Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: PM Modi meets BJP MPs from all north-eastern states

PM Narendra Modi met 16 BJP MPs from all North-Eastern States to deliberate on different issues including the Assam-Mizoram border dispute. 

Created On: Aug 1, 2021 15:56 ISTModified On: Aug 2, 2021 15:56 IST

Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: PM Narendra Modi on August 2, 2021, met 16 BJP MPs from all North-Eastern States to deliberate on different issues including the Assam-Mizoram border dispute. The meeting was attended by Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, 12 MPs from Assam, 2 from Arunachal Pradesh, and 1 each from Tripura and Manipur.

Union Minister Kiren Rijiju said that the MPs have shared their memorandum with PM Modi regarding Congress politicizing the Assam-Mizoram border issue and issuing proactive statements. The MPs stated that several confidence-building measures have been taken place over the last few days.

PM Modi urged to not look at the Assam-Mizoram border dispute under the prism of politics while expressing that his love and affection for the Northeast is natural.

On August 1, 2021, the Mizoram Government had announced to remove Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma’s name from an FIR.

Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: Assam Govt issues travel advisory against traveling to Mizoram

•Assam Government on July 29, 2021, had issued a travel advisory directing people of Assam to not travel towards Mizoram stating a ‘threat to personal safety".

•A directive by Assam’s advisory from the State’s Home and Political Department said that amid the ongoing border dispute, “the people of Assam are advised not to travel to Mizoram as any threat to the personal safety of people cannot be accepted.”

•Assam government on July 29 also issued two more directives ordering that all vehicles coming from Mizoram will be checked for ‘illicit drugs’ and asked senior police officers in Kamrup and Cachar districts to ensure the security and safety of Assamese people living in Mizoram.

•On July 26, amid the ongoing Assam-Mizoram border dispute, six Assam Police personnel were killed and around 50 were injured during a firing from Mizoram at the Assam-Mizoram Border for which the Assam government had announced a three-day state mourning on July 27.

Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: Assam Govt announces 3-day state mourning

•Assam Government on July 27, 2021, announced a 3-day state mourning to pay respects to the five police personnel and one civilian who lost their lives in a firing at the Assam-Mizoram border on July 26.

•In a press conference, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that Assam Government will be providing financial assistance of Rs 50 lakhs each to families of the police personnel who lost their lives yesterday in a firing at the Assam-Mizoram border and the injured will be offered Rs 1 lakh each. The injured SP has been sent to Mumbai for treatment.

•Sarma further said that the Assam government has also decided to move Supreme Court over the border dispute stating that encroachment has taken place. “This is not a political issue. This is a boundary dispute between two states. This is a long-standing border dispute,” he said.

3-day state mourning in Assam - Background

•On July 26, 2021, six Assam Police personnel were killed and around 50 were injured during a firing from Mizoram at the Assam-Mizoram Border.

•Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma had tweeted to inform that six Assam Police personnel have sacrificed their lives while defending the constitutional boundary at the Assam-Mizoram border.

•In response, Mizoram Home Minister Lalchamliana said in a statement that Mizoram Police responded ‘spontaneously by firing back’ at Assam Police after its 200 personnel forcibly entered a duty post manned by CRPF personnel and began firing unarmed people.

•Union Home Minister Amit Shah spoke with the Chief Ministers of Assam and Mizoram over the border dispute to ensure an amicable situation after both the CMs engaged in a spat on Twitter on July 26. After Shah’s intervention requesting both CMs to resolve the dispute mutually, the Assam Police personnel retracted and the handed over Mizoram’s duty post to CRPF personnel.

Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: All you need to know

•H Lalthlangliana, Deputy Commissioner, Kolasib district, Mizoram earlier had written a letter to Assam’s Cachar district administration alleging human rights violation and atrocities on tribal people by Assam government officials and police during a stand-off on July 10, 2021, said an official in Aizawl.

•The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) and National Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) also have received copies of the letter.

•In response, GP Singh, Special Director-General, Assam Police, said that the basic issue is encroachment. There is a Constitutional boundary for both Mizoram and Assam.

Lalthlangliana’s letter to Assam’s Cachar DA – Key points

•Without prior notice, on July 10, a road was constructed from Assam to Buarchep, and crops belonging to people of the Mizo tribe were destroyed by officials of Assam with support from the police. Further, the tribal people who were protesting the damage were forcefully forced out by Assam police personnel.

•On July 11, 2021, around 2.40 am, Mizoram police forces on the border at Saihapui V village and Buarchep on the Assam border heard two loud explosions. A criminal case under the Explosive Substances Act was also lodged at the Vairengte police station, Mizoram.

Assam-Mizoram Border Dispute: Background

•During the British era, Mizoram was called Lushai Hills, a district of Assam.

•The Mizoram-Assam Border Dispute dates to the notifications passed during the British era:

(i) The Notification of 1875, derived from the Bengal Eastern Frontier Regulation (BEFR) Act, 1873, that demarcated Lushai Hills (now Mizoram) from the Cachar district of Assam.

(ii) The Notification of 1933, that demarcated Lushai Hills and Manipur.

•Mizoram's stance is the demarcation should be based on the 1875 Notification. As per the Mizo leaders, the Mizo society was not consulted hence they are against the 1933 Notification.

•Assam government follows the Notification of 1933.

•A 164.6-km inter-state border demarcates Mizoram and Assam. Three Mizoram districts namely Aizawl, Mamit, and Kolasib share a border with three Assam districts namely Karimganj, Hailakandi, Cachar.

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