GUWAHATI: After Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh, the Assam Government is now keen to resolve the State's border disputes with Mizoram. A delegation of the Assam Government will leave for Mizoram tomorrow on a goodwill mission to set the ball rolling for an amicable solution to the border row between the two states.
The delegation will comprise Border Protection and Development Minister Atul Bora, Guwahati Development Department and Irrigation Minister Ashok Singhal and senior officials of the Assam Government.
Last year in July, an untoward incident had taken place along the Assam-Mizoram border in which some Assam Police personnel died. After this incident, there was an undercurrent of tension between the two states for a few days but slowly peace prevailed. Now, Assam wants a permanent and peaceful solution to the border dispute with Mizoram.
Talking to The Sentinel, minister Atul Bora said, "After Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma took oath in May last year, maintaining friendly relations with neighbouring states and solving the inter-state border problems were among his thrust areas. Assam has arrived at a consensus with Meghalaya in six disputed areas. The Survey of India is carrying out a survey of the land border in these six areas.
"With Arunachal Pradesh, recently a chief ministerial-level talk was held at Namsai. The 12 regional committees that have been formed by both states will now visit the disputed areas. As border resolution with Meghalaya and Arunachal Pradesh is on the right track, the Assam Government has now shifted its focus towards Mizoram."
Bora further said, "Last year when an untoward incident had taken place along the Assam-Mizoram border, minister Ashok Singhal and I had visited Aizawl. After this incident, a cordial discussion between both Chief Ministers was also held in New Delhi. I have had several talks with the Home Minister of Mizoram and officers of the Assam Government are in constant touch with their counterparts in Mizoram. The objective of the goodwill mission is to decide the way forward for resolving the border disputes between the two states." He added that the goodwill mission would pave the way for a discussion between both Chief Ministers.
The delegation will hold talks with the Mizoram Home Minister and senior government officers. It is also likely to pay a courtesy call on Mizoram Chief Minister Zoramthanga. "We hope to get a good response from Mizoram in resolving the border row," said Bora.
Assam shares a 164.64-km border with Mizoram along the districts of Cachar, Hailakandi and Karimganj.