– Ezrela Daldia Fanai & Bhrigu Talukdar
Assam Border Protection Minister Atul Bora & Minister for Urban Development Ashok Singhal met with Mizoram Home Minister Lalchamliana & MoS Lalruatkima at Aizawl today to chart a way forward to resolve the border dispute brewing between both the states.
The much-anticipated meeting was vital in mending the strenuous relationship between both the states, after the bloody Vairengte clashes which took the life of six Assam Police personnel at the Assam Mizoram border on July 26.
In the joint statement issued after the meeting at Aijal Club, it was agreed by both sides to find ‘lasting solutions’ to the interstate border dispute and to take forward the steps taken by the union home ministry and both the chief ministers. The representatives of the Mizoram Govt also conveyed their condolences on the loss of life on July 26.
Govt. of Assam & Govt. of Mizoram successfully signed a Joint Statement today after deliberations at Aizawl. Both governments agree to take forward Ministry of Home Affairs' initiatives to remove prevailing tensions and to find lasting solutions through discussions. pic.twitter.com/W3H8buNrj9
— CM Office Mizoram (@CMOMizoram) August 5, 2021
Both the state governments have also agreed to maintain peace in the interstate border area welcoming the deployment of a neutral centrally armed police force.
Assam and Mizoram have also decided not to send their respective police and forest protection forces for ‘patroling’, ‘domination’, ‘enforcement’ or for fresh deployment in any of the areas where “confrontation or conflict has taken place between the police forces in recent times,” in the districts of Hailakandi, Cachar, and Karimganj in Assam & Mamit and Kolasib in Mizoram.
I thank Mizoram Home Minister Shri @Lalchamliana12, MoS Shri Lalruatkima, Secretary Home Shri Vanlalngaihsaka for the warm hospitality.
— Atul Bora (@ATULBORA2) August 5, 2021
Representatives of both sides also agreed to “take all necessary measures to promote, preserve and maintain peace and harmony among the people living in Assam and Mizoram particularly in the border areas.”
Earlier Assam Agriculture Minister Atul Bora who is in charge of Border Protection & Development along with Minister of Housing Ashok Singhal reached Aizawl in a special chartered flight on the morning of August 5.
— Zoramthanga (@ZoramthangaCM) August 5, 2021
Before leaving speaking to ANI in Guwahati, Atul Bora expressed hope for a fruitful interaction reiterating “Assam wants to keep the spirit of unity and brotherhood alive”.
Landing in Lenpui Airport they were welcomed warmly by the representatives of the Mizoram Govt later moving to Aijal Club where the discussions took place.
Later speaking to the media the Assam Border Protection Minister said that happenings in Virengte were ‘unfortunate’ and there will be discussions in the future when everything will be “sorted out.” He also appreciated the Mizoram Chief Ministers’ approach that border disputes can be solved amicably.
“Our Chief Minister also desires it (border dispute) should be settled amicably through meaningful dialogue” Bora added.
On being asked about the happenings of Vairengte and the role of the police forces of both sides he declined answering saying he did not want to create controversy for people residing in the border areas.
Mizoram Home Minister Lalchamlina echoed the sentiments. “We should forget the past and move on,” he said answering a query on the disturbances in the border area.