* Parleys at Chief Secretary level held
GUWAHATI: To quell on the spot the unpleasant and intermittent boundary skirmishes between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, the two State governments have decided to form committees with the Deputy Commissioners and also deploy 'Border Magistrates' at those sites.
For sorting out the boundary problems between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh and minimizing the points of differences between the two States, a Chief Secretary-level meeting was held at Itanagar on Monday. After the meeting, Assam Chief Secretary Kumar Sanjay Krishna and DGP Bhaskar Jyoti Mahanta, who was also present at the meeting, met Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu and briefed him on the issues discussed and the decisions taken at the meeting.
Talking to The Sentinel after the meeting, Kumar Sanjay Krishna said, "Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has said that such meetings should continue from time to time so as to enhance goodwill between the two States."
"Khandu has also thanked the Assam government for making communication facilities available during the corona-inducted lockdown."
On issues that came up for discussion at the meeting, the Chief Secretary said, "Intermittent border skirmishes do take place in the forested areas in Dhemaji and Biswanath districts of Assam with their adjacent districts of Arunachal Pradesh regarding encroachment. Sometimes people from Arunachal Pradesh trespass Assam areas and vice versa. To sort out the unpleasant situations that arise from such skirmishes, today's meeting has also decided to form committees with the DCs concerned of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh districts. The meeting has also decided to depute Border Magistrates to those districts of the two States to sort out smaller issues on the spot.
"During such intermittent skirmishes, both the States have filed cases against each others' officers on the charge of trespassing. To take measures for the disposal of such cases, today's meeting has also decided to form a Home Commissioner-level committee of the two States."
On September 25, 2020, such a Chief Secretary-level meeting was held between Assam and Nagaland. Various issues, including maintenance of the status quo and peace along the inter-State border, were discussed at the meeting. The meeting also decided to start joint patrolling by the police personnel of the two States.
"Even though cases on Assam-Nagaland and Assam-Arunachal Pradesh boundary disputes have been pending with the Supreme Court of India, we can solve smaller boundary skirmishes through such talks. We're going to hold such meetings with Mizoram and Meghalaya as well," the Chief Secretary said.
In March 2014, a high-level meeting was held between Assam and Mizoram wherein both the parties agreed to maintain status quo. However, the neighbouring State doesn't seem to adhere to that understanding now. In 2017, Chief Minister-level boundary talks were held between Assam and Meghalaya, but the boundary with Meghalaya is not free from unpleasant scenes.
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