District officials to be held accountable, new camp of forest guards at Behali
By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, June 13: Facing flak for ubated security problems along the disputed inter-state border areas, the Assam government today said district officials will be held responsible in the event of any further encroachment by neighbouring states. A high-level team from the State government, comprising Chief Secretary VK Pipersenia, Additiol Chief Secretary MGVK Bhanu, Principle Secretary (Home and Political) LS Changsan and DGP Khagen Sarma today visited Behali forest where miscreants from Aruchal Pradesh had killed an Assamese woodcutter a few days back, escalating tension in the area.
The team was also accompanied by officials from the army, Assam Rifles and CRPF besides officials of Sonitpur district administration.
The team had to walk nearly 4 kms to reach the site of occurrence, an official release said. As part of precautiory measures, the Chief Secretary directed setting up of a camp of the Forest Protection Force on the Assam side of the border in the area.
The team also interacted with locals who gave vent to their hardships in the wake of repeated threats from miscreants from Aruchal Pradesh.
"There has been encroachment in the past. But from now on, we have made it clear that district officials will be held responsible for any further encroachment," Bhanu told The Sentinel in the evening, referring to the instructions given to the district administration. Last year, 15 persons were killed and 12 others were injured when a human wall was being erected by residents of Assam side to stop encroachment inside the Behali Reserve Forest in Sonitpur district. Aruchal Pradesh has occupied about 13,211.11 hectares land, according to Assam government claims.